(VitalNews.org) – As the next tax season approaches and Americans prepare to get all their financial ducks in a row, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is warning people to watch out for emerging scams and advising them to make sure their information is protected.
At the beginning of December, alongside its Security Summit partners and during National Tax Security Awareness Week, the IRS published a warning for those filing taxes this coming tax season, which is expected to start sometime in mid-January 2024. Forty-two state tax agencies and other tax-related entities participated in the Security Summit, including software developers, financial processors, tax preparation firms, and other organizations.
Danny Werfel, Commissioner of the IRS, told taxpayers to watch out for “identity thieves,” who he called “relentless” and said “use a variety of techniques” to scam people. He added that taxpayers should “be careful with their personal information” and “be wary of email and text scams.”
Werfel said that scammers are aware that people are “anxious to receive the latest information” about refunds or other tax issues and that this is why scammers “will regularly pose as the IRS” or some kind of state agency to trick people into handing over sensitive information. He cautioned Americans to be especially wary of “unexpected messages… during filing season,” which could “be an elaborate trap by scam artists.”
The IRS also noted how identity thieves often use recent news stories, events, and tragedies for an advantage in their schemes to trick taxpayers.
They reminded Americans that the agency typically uses standard mail to initiate correspondence with taxpayers, so any unexpected messages by text, social media, or email about tax refunds should be immediately suspect. These phishing scams pose as official state entities or organizations to lure victims with phony promises about their tax refunds or scare them with false tax fraud allegations.
Security Summit partners also reminded Americans that clicking suspicious links can also load malware or ransomware onto their devices which could cause a host of other more serious issues.
Copyright 2023, VitalNews.org