Consumer Alert: IRS warns of tax scams ahead of filing deadline

Posted: Updated:
EDISON -

The IRS is warning taxpayers about scams ahead of the filing deadline that's just weeks away.

Scammers may reach out to potential victims through phone calls, voicemails, emails and even text messages. Experts say that as the filing deadline looms, it's prime time for tax scams.

This year, the IRS says scammers are even spoofing the phone numbers for its taxpayer advocate service to trick victims into calling back or texting. In some cases, they have asked for dates of birth and other personal information.

"What we’re seeing are criminals that will go out and try to solicit people on information about themselves, trying to fill in gaps," says cybersecurity expert Jason Bosslett.

To protect yourself, watch out for misspellings, bad grammar and other mistakes in written documentation. For example, the dates didn't match up in one fake IRS letter.

The IRS and legitimate tax preparers and advocates would never ask for sensitive information by text or email.

It's also a good idea to get your tax return done as early as possible.

"As soon as you file a tax return under your Social Security number, nobody else can claim your return," Bosslett notes.

The filing deadline is April 15.

MORE INFORMATION: IRS.gov

 

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