Sep 30

Don’t Fall Victim to an IRS Phone, Email, or Text Scam

At times it seems as if we hear about a new scam making the rounds every week, but there are still many “old ones” that keep surfacing. One of these is a call, email, or text from someone claiming to be a representative of the Internal Revenue Service who is contacting you about a tax issue.
The Internal Revenue Service does not initiate communications with a taxpayer via email. If you receive an email, do not respond or click on the links. The unsolicited email claiming to be from the IRS should be forwarded to the IRS at phishing@irs.gov.
If contact is by phone, the caller ID on your phone may indicate that the call is from the Internal Revenue Service or the area code may be for Washington, D.C. The caller may claim that you owe money and must pay immediately. These calls are not from the Internal Revenue Service. There may be threats that you will face terrible consequences including arrest if you do not comply with the request for personal information and/or payment to resolve the matter. The Internal Revenue Service does not request information about your credit card, debit card, or pre-paid card by phone.
Sometimes the caller will claim that you are entitled to a refund, but to receive the refund you have to provide personal information. Other times it is that you have to update your IRS e-file. The IRS does not initiate such requests via phone, text, or email.
If you get one of these calls, emails, or texts, do not give out any personal or financial information or comply with the directive to pay immediately. Do not panic.
The best thing to do if called is hang up if called and not respond to emails or text messages. According to the Internal Revenue Service website, report all such contacts to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration at 800-366-4484 if you do not owe taxes. If you owe taxes or think you might, calling the Internal Revenue Service directly and/or seeking the assistance of an attorney or tax professional who can help you deal with the issue should be considered.
More information can be found at the Internal Revenue Service website www.irs.gov by typing in “scam” or “tax scam” in the search box.