I have written frequently about the multitude of tax scams.
And once again, the scammers have found a way to play to and outwit your insatiable curiosity. Here’s one of the latest scams to be aware of, and how it works.
Scammers know that more and more people are screening and not answering calls from unrecognized or private numbers. So now, the crooks have developed software that allows them to display irresistible ‘fake’ numbers. Read More
WASHINGTON ― The Internal Revenue Service is cautioning taxpayers to avoid the dangers of “ghost” tax return preparers.
According to the IRS, a ghost preparer is paid to prepare a tax return, but does not sign it, either electronically or on paper, as the paid preparer. These phantom preparers who won’t put their name on the tax return are a warning sign for taxpayers of a potential scam.
Here’s how it works. The ghost preparer can print the paper return for their client and tells them to sign and mail it to the IRS. Or, for electronically-filed returns, they will prepare it but won’t digitally sign it as the paid preparer. Read More
WASHINGTON – The IRS, state tax agencies and the tax industry warned tax professionals to be alert to taxpayer data theft in the final weeks of the tax filing season. The Security Summit partners urged tax professionals to enhance their data safeguards immediately.
In recent days, the “New Client” scam has re-emerged, signaling ongoing attempts by cybercriminals to target tax professionals with spear phishing schemes. Read More
If you happen to notice an automatic deposit made in your bank account from the IRS or you get a refund check in the mail that you weren’t expecting, you are likely the victim of the latest tax scam.
On February 13th, the IRS released a warning to alert taxpayers to a fast growing new scam that uses stolen taxpayer’s information to fraudulently file taxes then deposit refunds into real bank accounts.
Once Deposit Is Made, The Criminals Make Contact
The IRS makes it clear that the criminals use a variety of tactics to get the fraudulent refund from the taxpayers. And, as the IRS points out the tactics are probably evolving, so you’ll want to stay alert.
In one version of the scam, criminals posing as debt collection agency officials acting on behalf of the IRS contacted the taxpayers to say a refund was deposited in error, and they asked the taxpayers to forward the money to their collection agency. Read More
The IRS warns taxpayers of a new twist on an old scam. Criminals are depositing fraudulent tax refunds into individuals’ actual bank accounts, then attempting to reclaim the refund from the taxpayers.
Here are the basic steps criminals follow to carry out this scam. The thief:
- Hacks tax preparers’ computers to steal taxpayer data.
- Uses the stolen information to file tax returns as the taxpayers.
- Has refunds deposited into taxpayers’ bank accounts.
- Contacts their victims, telling them the money was mistakenly deposited into their accounts and asking them to return it.
(Bloomberg) “You must pay your taxes immediately, or else,” an ominous voice on the other line says before demanding a credit-card number. Most Americans roll their eyes and hang up on these scam calls, but thousands have fallen victim, and millennials are more susceptible than older generations, a new study finds.
Millennials are less likely than Gen Xers or Baby Boomers to receive tax scam phone calls, according to a recent survey, but they were six times more likely than older generations to give the scammer their credit-card numbers, and twice as likely to give their Social Security numbers. Read More
All over the television, and in your spam email box, there are advertisements for IRS settlements. These companies can help you lower your IRS debt for a fee, customers say they paid a minimal amount, blah blah. Is this a scam? Well, most likely. There is a possibility of a settlement for your IRS debt, but you definitely do not need to pay horrendous fees to a company to do it for you.
Here are some tips:
1.An IRS settlement is called an Offer in Compromise.
2. The IRS cannot accept a settlement if you can actually afford to pay your bill. If you know this is you, check out the payment plan options on the IRS website.