The Revenue Service recently issued a warning to the public of a new scam, detailing that suspicious individuals have been sending out cardboard envelopes involving the taxpayer to send a photo of their driver’s license and confidential bank account details to receive their unclaimed tax refund.
The envelope bears a fake IRS’ masthead, and carries a letter that contains contact information and a phone number that doesn’t belong to the IRS. This was brought to the attention of The Security Summit, who collaborated with the IRS to warn citizens of this fraud.
Additionally, IRS Commissioner Danny Werfel mentioned that these scams have also popped up in emails, text or special mailing. The IRS only contacts taxpayers through mail. As a precautionary measure, they added it onto the “Dirty Dozen” list, which compiles every malicious scams targeted towards taxpayers. Many of these often appear during tax season to take advantage of people’s vulnerability.
The Scam and How to Avoid It
Upon examination, the letter contained awkward and poorly worded writing, as well as misinformation. It stated that the deadline for filing a tax refund was until October 17, but it’s actually on the 16th. Moreover, it stated “unclaimed property,” which the IRS doesn’t handle.
The IRS gave safety measures to prevent falling victim to these scams, they advise individuals to not open any suspicious links and attachments. If you accidentally clicked and entered your personal details, visit the IRS Identity Protection page. Afterwards, send the email or text to
[email protected] with the sender’s private details, and delete the original email or text. To check your tax refund’s progress, go to the IRS2GoApp or check “Where’s My Refund?” tool.
Scams like these remind us to be careful when receiving suspicious links and attachment from unknown individuals, they could easily steal your data and identity for malicious intent.