Kane In Your Corner

Consumer Alert: Tax scams aimed at businesses

The IRS says that for the first time in years cyberscams aimed at businesses have replaced IRS phone scams as its No. 1 threat. The IRS says that for the first time in years cyberscams aimed at businesses have replaced IRS phone scams as its No. 1 threat.
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The IRS says that for the first time in years cyberscams aimed at businesses have replaced IRS phone scams as its No. 1 threat.

The IRS says that the scammers will target a business’s administrative staff with emails that appear to be from executives. The messages may say something like “Can you send me the updated list of employees with full details, name, Social Security number, etc.” Or the messages may ask for a list of W-2s of employees’ wages and tax statements.

“Of course, the person in personnel wants to get back timely to that executive so they immediately compile that information and send it off,” says IRS Special Agent Jonathan Larsen.

Larsen says that the IRS wants to educate people about the scam risks instead of having to get involved in a criminal investigation.

“Hopefully we can educate folks so they can take a few preventative measures so that we can assist them in not falling prey for this scheme,” he says.

The scam was originally aimed at large corporations, but the IRS says that now the scam is targeting hospitals, nonprofit organizations and schools.

Business administrators are urged to be aware of this scam and contact their superiors if they think a request looks suspicious.

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