Tax scammers steal the tax and personal information of
taxpayers to file false tax returns on their behalf and reclaim exaggerated
refunds. There have been many instances where taxpayers who collect refunds
after filing numerous false returns eventually find themselves in the prison. As
far as taxpayers are concerned, it is important to protect their Social
Security Number (SSN), filing status and any other information they use on
their tax return from scammers. Some of the top ways scammers use to extract
sensitive information include:
- Making cold calls pretending to be from the IRS,
a bank or a reputable institution. If they ask you to share sensitive
information with them over the phone, know it is from scammers.
- Sending unsolicited emails to you masked as the
IRS, a bank or a reputable institution. These emails have link(s) that lead you
to a bogus web page or a website that looks authentic. Never click on any such
links on emails. If need be, make a call to your bank to check if the
information is correct, but never be led by what you read on such emails.
- Appearing at your door pretending to be from a
charitable organization. If you must donate, check the facts about the
authenticity of the charity. It is better to contact a charity yourself to
donate than obliging strangers.
To protect your tax information, it is advisable to initiate
contact with an organization or the IRS. Responding to cold calls or
unsolicited emails is dangerous in financial matters. Some scammers use malware
to extract information from computers after a user clicks on an email link or
opens a web page. Therefore, taxpayers must disregard any unsolicited emails
they receive and use safe methods such as a phone call to a known number to
contact the IRS, their bank or other institutions.
Tax scammers can only be successful in their efforts if
taxpayers are negligent. Keeping yourself informed about the various methods
tax scammers use to extract sensitive information will help you identify and
defend yourself against scammers.
Labels: Identity Theft, IRS, Tax News, Tax Refunds, Tax Scams, Taxpayers