Even though the federal tax season ended on April 18, the IRS is still receiving information about tax scams. Two new scams are targeting the families of Military personnel and many e-mail users. In both cases, the perpetrators are posing as employees of the IRS.
The IRS has seen several cases of scams that targets the families of Military personnel.
The IRS wants taxpayers to be aware of the first scenario where a telephone caller, posing as an IRS employee, claims that the taxpayer is entitled to a refund because their relative is in the Military. They then proceed to request a credit card number in order to cover the postage fee. The scammer gives the actual IRS toll-free number to make the call seem legitimate. Once the scammers have the credit card number, they make countless purchases with the victim’s information.
When actual IRS employees call taxpayers, they will NEVER ask for credit card numbers or request fees for anything.
These types of scams have been going on for years and, sadly, many people still fall prey to them and, before they know it, thousands have been charged to their credit cards. The IRS asks that taxpayers remember that they do not charge for refunds or ask for credit card information.”
In the other scam, victims get an e-mail that looks like it’s from the IRS. The e-mail provides links to a non-IRS web page which requests personal and financial information. The information is then used to steal your identity and gain access to your sensitive financial data.
Identity thieves use your personal data to:
-Take over your financial accounts,
-Make purchases on your existing credit cards,
-Apply for loans, credit cards, services or benefits in your name, and
-File fraudulent tax returns.
The IRS will NEVER ask for your personal or financial data via e-mail.
Both of these scams are under review by the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration. They are currently investigating the abuse of the IRS name, insignia, seals, and symbols.
Taxpayers who believe they have been scammed need to contact TIGTA by calling their toll-free fraud referral hotline at 1-800-366-4484, or by faxing a complaint to 202-927-7018. You can also write the TIGTA Hotline at: P.O. Box 589, Ben Franklin Station, Washington, D.C. 20044-0589.
These are not the first scams that involve scammers who impersonate IRS employees, nor they will be the last. However, the IRS is working diligently to put a stop to them.
These thieves have impersonated IRS agents in the past by even showing up at a taxpayers’ home, claiming to collect taxes. Genuine IRS agents and collection officers will produce a picture ID and will contact the taxpayer before they visit. In another scam, the con artists send out false bank correspondence and phony IRS forms in order to trick the taxpayer into giving them their personal and financial information. These thieves then use this information to pose as the taxpayer to gain access to the their finances.
If you ever have questions about your correspondence with the IRS, either by phone, email or postal mail, please contact the IRS or a qualified tax professional right away.