IRS Scam Calls, Here Again!

April is right around the corner and so are the IRS scam calls! Have you started receiving them yet? If you didn’t know already, it’s usually not the actual IRS!

How can you spot the IRS scam calls lie?

Typically the calls are automated but there have been live people who call as well saying something along the lines of,

“this is to inform you that the IRS is filing lawsuit against you.  For more information on this case file please call our department number at xxx-xxx-xxxx.  Thank you.”

Scammers main goals are to scare you! You don’t really owe money, the IRS is not filing a law suit against you and you do NOT need to pay over the phone or send money in the mail!

6 Things the Real IRS Would NEVER Do!

According to the IRS there are a few things to take note of to determine if it is and IRS scam call or not.

  1. The IRS would NEVER call to demand payment immediately over the phone.
  2. They would NEVER call about taxes owed without mailing you a bill first.
  3. They wouldn’t demand tax payment without giving you a chance to appeal the amount.
  4. The IRS would NEVER ask for debit or credit card payment over the phone!
  5. The IRS would also NEVER threaten to call the police or other law enforcement for nonpayment.

What do you do if you get a scam call?

  • You can call the IRS at 1-800-829-1040 to determine if you actually owe money! If you can’t tell whether or not the call is fake, you can call the IRS and figure out if you actually owe anything.
  • You can also report the scam callers to the Federal Trade Commission. Use the “FTC Complaint Assistant” on Add “IRS Telephone Scam” to the comments of your report.
  • If you’re getting emails about taxes and suspect it’s a scam, forward the email to Then delete it. DO NOT OPEN IT.

How to Prevent Fraud: Financial Documents

Fraud is everywhere, leading to more digital documentation and less documented on paper. As convenient as this is, there are still some documentation that we receive in the mail or at work that has our personal data on it but we think nothing of it. This personal data could be essential to our identity, which is why we need to protect it. According to the Insurance Information Institute, in America, 12% of people are a victim of Bank fraud and in Missouri alone, 820,000 of the population were a victim to identity theft.

Top Financial Documents to Destroy to Prevent Fraud

To commit fraud, a hacker or identity thief would only need your name, DOB, phone number and/or address. With that information alone they can create new credit cards, a new identity, file fraudulent tax returns and more. To protect your financial status and prevent fraud, here are the top financial documents to destroy.

1. Bank Statements and Pay stubs

Though it may seem that bank statements and pay stubs are harmless, it still contains your name, address, possibly your bank account number ( either partial or whole number) and how much money you have in your account. These are all things that hackers can easily impersonate you with if it fell into the wrong hands. Your pay stub could also contain your social security number. These items should definitely be in your shred pile.

2. Credit/Debit Cards and Credit/Debit Card Numbers

How many of us have cut up our credit card with scissors, threw it in the trash and called it good? Well, it’s not very good. Compromised cards are often those that are put back together . It can contain your card number, your name and possibly your address. Decrease risks of credit card fraud by shredding them.

3. Old Tax Returns

Shredding your old tax returns is the best way to prevent tax fraud. Throwing away your tax returns can put you at high risk of fraud with information like your social security number, address, name, income and place of employment all on one paper. If someone stole your information they could apply for credit cards, open up bank accounts, apply for a tax return under your name, etc.

4. Junk Mail

Junk mail may be junk to you but a gold mine to an identity thief. If you’re currently throwing away credit card offers or loan offers that comes in the mail, you could be putting yourself at risk. If that junk mail got into the wrong hands, someone could open up an account in your name.

5. Canceled/Voided Checks

Have you ever seen the movie Blank Check? How often do you void a check? What do you do with it afterwards? Do you throw it away or leave it laying around the house? Voided checks are an easy way for someone to access your routing number and account number. Your name and address could also be on that check making it a high risk item for identity theft. If you write a check, make sure you’re writing a check to a trusted source or pay cash, if possible.

6. ATM receipts

Although these little things like to fly out of your car window, they are just as important as any other financial document. If fallen in the wrong hands you could be at high risk of identity theft. Account numbers and routing numbers are often exposed which makes it important to keep a tight grip on ATM receipts.

What have we learned from this? When in doubt, shred! If your name, address and phone number is on it, shred it. If your bank account information is on it, shred it! What better company could you ask to shred your documents besides Access Records Management? We take pride in making sure your documents are safe and we like to provide our customers with the knowledge they need to keep their documents safe.

A Guide for Computer and Data Security

When it comes to issues with your records and their storage, security is right at the top of the list. Whether storing your paper records at our offsite facility, scanning your paper records to digital formats, or shredding your confidential records, we at Access Records Management take security very seriously. Access Records Management has strict controlled access into our facility. All of our employees have passed stringent background and drug testing and have  clean driving records. All of our trucks and vans are equipped with GPS tracking systems so your records are always being tracked while on their way to our facility. We have a high tech, 24 hour security video surveillance system within our facility, and industry leading premise inventory protocols and accounting.

What about you?

Do you leave your car unlocked in your driveway or on the street? That is an invitation for anyone to rummage through and steal something.  Do you leave your doors unlocked or the garage door open?  Do you close up your office but have vulnerable access through window or door breakage. Do you have an alarm system installed? If so, do you activate the alarm?  Many police departments will give free security audits.

What about your computer?


You hopefully have virus and/or malware protection; everyone including Apple users (you are not immune these days) should take adequate measures to protect their devices. But in reviewing McAfee Labs Threats Report (May 2015),  I saw several disturbing trends.


First, mobile malware is on the increase; be careful what you load onto your phone (or tablet) and be aware of what information you keep on those devices.


Second, ransom ware is rising again and with more virulence.  Ransom ware is malware (virus, root kit, etc.)  that locks you out of your computer, or the data on it, and demands payment to unlock it. Again, take caution in what you access (avoid emails that don’t look right or are not from who it says or “cool” links) Backing up your computer is often the best protection.


Third, beware that you keep Adobe Flash up to date. This is used in many media players.  If you have Shockwave or Multimedia Flash software that is out of date, it is quite possibly very dangerous; get the latest updates from  Adobe Flash to be safe to and try to avoid the malware in malicious downloads.


One last thing: Beware of getting computer or other “intelligent” device from a questionable source (not a mainline store or reputable web site) because they can have firmware/malware which may not be detectable or correctable with anti-virus programs. These may also be infected by Trojans or other malware.  For further information about this report see McAfee Labs at

Watch Out!

It is usually not a good omen when you hear or say “Watch Out!” If you are a parent this is something probably familiar and maybe not an emergency situation. But when your CPA, lawyer, or your insurance agent says it, it may mean you need to pay attention to your business and/or your personal life. Your business surely is organized with easy to access data and financial information grouped in a manageable, sensible filing method that everyone understands. Are your home records equally well organized and accessible? Do you have “data creep” in your home or office?

One sign of data management problems is a request to “watch out” for the J Smith and S Jones files. Quotes like: “Where is my File Box?” or “I hope we didn’t shred that stuff!” definitely shows information management problems. Does it sometimes take days to locate an important file or archived bankers box for work? If your file room(s) at the office is becoming unwieldy, overcrowded, or just taking up too much valuable real estate, consider managed storage outside your office. I suggest Access Records Management in Kansas City, MO. for your physical data storage needs. They can track your boxes or even individual file folders in boxes or specialty cabinets with industry leading software tracking. If scan to digital format is needed, Access Records Management does that to with our popular “scan on demand” service. Access Records can also do your shredding and recycling on a regular or demand basis. This gives security when your files become obsolete.

Please consider Access Records Management of Kansas City, MO. for your offsite data storage & information management needs. Our phone number is: (816) 331-7200.

How Safe Is Your Healthcare Information?

Anytime you go to a doctor’s office for the first time, they make you fill out paperwork. Lots of paperwork! One page will be information about you, including your name, address, phone number, social security number, insurance information, etc. Another one will be about HIPAA compliance. Yet another one will be who to contact in case of emergency. Some offices have more papers than others.

Everyone fills  out these forms, but did  you ever think about what happens to all that information? You should. What do they do with that personal information? Who has access to it? Can it get into the wrong hands? All legitimate questions with a myriad of answers.

All of that paperwork is kept for an extended period of time.  Government regulations mandate that your doctor has to keep that information for at least 7 years after you are last seen at the office. The doctor also creates more paper for your chart. The staff at the doctor’s office is critical to your healthcare. Your chart is pulled and seen by a number of people you will never even meet. Some of the people that have access to, and will view your personal information, are nurses, receptionists, office managers, billing specialists, medical records clerks. Anytime you have lab work done, fill a prescription, see the doctor, or even call the office, more paper will be added to your chart and seen by multiple staff members. All that paper keeps adding up every time you do anything healthcare related.

After at least 7 years of inactivity, all that paper in the chart can be destroyed. If there are not many papers, this is usually done by a receptionist or medical records clerk by using a small paper shredder purchased at a local office supply store.

However, if the doctor’s office has a large amount of paper to shred, either because there are many paper charts that are more than 7 years old, or the doctor is converting the paper charts to digital format and inserting the information into their EMR. (Electronic Medical Record) The  doctor might use an outside company that has an industrial size shredding machine. At Access Records Management, all of our shred bins are locked securely until they reach our facility. Our vans are equipped with GPS tracking systems and our drivers have passed extensive background checks. We are a woman and family owned and operated business in Kansas City, and we take our jobs very seriously. Once the paper is shredded you will not be able to put it back together, guaranteed. This shredded paper is compressed into a six foot long bale and recycled.

Everywhere you go and fill out paperwork in the healthcare field; your digital fingerprint is kept for an extended period of time. Doctors’ offices, labs, hospitals, clinics, chiropractor, dentist, physical therapist, the list goes on and on. The majority of healthcare offices are rule abiding professionals that conduct business correctly and are diligent about protecting you and your personal health information (PHI). Make sure that you trust not only your doctor but the employees that work for your doctor as well, that they will make the right decisions and keep your personal information safe and secure and away from the wrong hands.