Q&A on the News

Q: I have received three phone calls in four days from a computerized voice announcing that they are the IRS and are giving us final notice of a lawsuit that will be filed against us for unpaid taxes. This has to be a scam since we pay our taxes, but where should we report it to prevent others from being scammed?

—Laurie Gorbatkin, Decatur

A: The IRS “will always” send a letter when it needs to contact taxpayers. It never contacts you by phone or email, and it doesn’t ask for credit, debit or prepaid card numbers over the phone, it states on irs.gov. Phone scams have become particularly aggressive toward the elderly and immigrants.

To report scams, call the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration at 800-366-4484. If you receive an email you think is a scam, forward it to phishing@irs.gov. You also can file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission at ftccomplaintassistant.gov or at complaints.donotcall.gov.

Q: After I voted was asked to take part in a national election pool survey, conducted by Edison Research. Can you provide some details on this? How is it used?

—Wheeler Bryan, Atlanta

A: Exit polls provide data to news organizations and helps them analyze election results. Edison Research states it’s the “exclusive provider of election exit polls to the National Election Pool,” a group that includes ABC, CBS, CNN, Fox, NBC and the Associated Press. “The survey results are the best tools available to help understand the motivations and patterns behind the vote,” it states on Edison Research’s website. Its surveys from last week’s election provided “political, demographic and geographic information detailing voter preferences.”

Andy Johnston wrote this column. Do you have a question about the news? We’ll try to get the answer. Call 404-222-2002 or email q&a@ajc.com (include name, phone and city).

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