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Cybersecurity Phishing

Tax Season = Hunting Season for Cyber-Criminals

Tax season is upon us one again. As the old adage goes, “nothing in life is guaranteed except for death and taxes.” But also recently, another guaranteed part of life is that cyber-criminals love tax season and the opportunities that it affords them while American citizens and businesses are working towards various filing deadlines.

The IRS publishes a list of it’s “Dirty Dozen” tax-themed scams each year which include threatening telephone calls, emails posing as the agency, fake emails posing as the CEOs or CFOs looking for W-2 information, and a variety of other fraudulent activity that scammers engage in. Recently the IRS has added identity protection pins and W-2 verification codes to try to cut back on the fraud, but cyber-criminals continue to have success in tricking victims into surrendering personal information and sometimes even sending them money via bank wires or even gift cards.

A few important points that the IRS stresses in many of its publications:

  1. The IRS will not call you. Especially, the IRS will not call you and threaten you with imprisonment.
  2. The IRS will not email you and ask for personal information.
  3. The IRS will not use social media to contact you or discuss your taxes with you.
  4. The IRS does not accept payment by gift cards.

For more information on tax scams, check out some of our previous blog postings:
Tax Season is Here – Beware Scammers

Tax Time Is Upon Us & So Are The Scammers with a New Attack

Postponed Tax Deadline Approaching and with it Tax-Related Phishing Attacks

Tax Season Scams to Lookout For