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BEWARE OF IRS SCAMMERS!

Beware of IRS Scammers! Criminals are always looking for new ways to create scams for money, and the latest attempt involves thieves claiming to be from the IRS. It’s not new that IRS scams exist but with technology also comes new creative ideas to make these scams successful. Best time for these scammers to steal money from innocent people is during tax season. The scams involve fake tax bills about the Affordable Care Act and send letters that look legitimate. However, IRS does send these types of letters to tax payers to collect fees. Still, the problem is that the victims can’t tell the difference and wind up falling for it. Also, the scammers are sending fraudulent versions of CP2000 notices for tax year 2015 and 2016, which are letters that inform taxpayers about discrepancies on their tax return. These scam letters are being sent by email. However, a way to don’t fall for these scams is keeping in mind that the IRS won’t send these types of notices via email.

When IRS notices come in the mail or call you, how can we tell what is legit and what is a scam?

Here are a few warning signs that a notice/call “from the IRS” is fake:

  • Appears to be issued from an Austin, Texas, address.

  • Says the issue is related to the Affordable Care Act and requests information regarding 2014 coverage.

  • Lists the letter number in the payment voucher as 105C.

  • Requests checks made out to I.R.S. and sent to the “Austin Processing Center” at a post office box.

  • This IRS says the type of notice scammers are using is usually several pages long, so another thing to remember if you receive this type of letter in the mail.

  • They call you to your phone. IRS won’t call if you really owe money to Uncle Sam. They will send you a letter.

  • The IRS representative asks you to put the money in an iTunes gift card, prepaid debit card, gift card or wire transfer.

  • The letter/call threatens to bring in local police to have you arrested.

  • They ask you to pay by credit/debit card over the phone.

  • The notice comes in via email.

What to do after you find out it’s a scam?

  • Do not give out any information and hang up immediately.

  • Don’t click on links from unsolicited emails or text messages

  • Contact TIGTA to report the call. Use their “IRS Impersonation Scam Reporting” page or call 800-366-4484.

  • Report it to the Federal Trade Commission. Use the “FTC Complaint Assistant” on FTC.gov. Please add “IRS Telephone Scam” in the notes.

  • If you think you might owe taxes, call the IRS directly at 800-829-1040.

Scammers make themselves look legitimate so you will trust them. They take advantage of people’s emotions and fears to get them to make fast decisions, before there’s even time to think it through. So, don’t be pressured to make fast decisions, take time to research any organization or group that reaches out to you directly.

By UNIKO Media Group