Scams are on the rise! Whether it be in the form of a phone call, email, or direct mailing, scam artists are trying to steal your personal information. The IRS has continuously warned taxpayers to think twice before providing any sensitive information to anyone, even if the request appears to come from the IRS.
Scams have gotten increasingly sophisticated. Scam artists have taken the time to recreate documents and may use your readily available public information to make requests seem more legitimate. In December 2018, the IRS warned taxpayers about Tax Transcript scams that included downloadable forms that could infect your computer with malware, which could seek out sensitive information on your computer.
While requests for information from the IRS can be time sensitive, if you receive a request (whether by phone, email, or mail), take an extra second to examine the correspondence and compare it to a previous request you may have received. If you receive a phone call that doesn’t seem legitimate, request a callback number so you can evaluate the legitimacy of the request. Also, if the phone number appears on your caller ID, try searching the phone number on the internet to see if it has been flagged as a potential scam.
If you have any questions regarding a request that you received, discuss with your tax preparer, tax attorney, family and/or friends.