Tax fraud doesn’t just occur during tax season. Fraudsters are finding new ways to bilk taxpayers and you may expect scam attempts during the entire year. The IRS phone scam is a prime example of a current and overwhelming problem. However, by following a few simple tips, you can protect yourself from becoming a tax scam victim.
- Do not respond to any unsolicited communication through email, text messages, social media messages, etc.
- If you receive a phone call from someone claiming to be with the IRS, do not share any personal or financial information, or agree to transfer any money.
- When discarding financial documents, shred them properly. Scammers are known to search for personal and financial information in the garbage.
- Remember to ask for the Personal Tax Identification Number (PTIN) of any tax preparer before you hire him/her.
- Never click on the links in any unsolicited email. It may be an attempt to steal your information or to infect your computer with malware.
- Remember that the IRS never communicates with taxpayers through email. They’ll send notices through the postal service.
If there’s any doubt as to the authenticity of a communication, take time to respond. Tell the other person that you will return their call or that you’ll respond to their communication later. Then conduct your research to confirm the identity of the person who contacted you.