IRS warns of new scam around wrong tax refund deposits

IRS warns of new scam around wrong tax refund deposits

The IRS is warning resident about a new tax scam that is circulating in an effort to keep you and your finances safe.

The Delaware Division of Revenue says they've been informed by the IRS that thieves are stealing client data from tax professionals and using that information to mail fake refund checks to taxpayers or deposit checks into their accounts. They tell the taxpayer about an erroneous refund sent to their account and ask them to forward the mistakenly deposited funds to the collection agency.

The scammers claim the refund was too much and some of it must be returned.

Also it is harder to track when criminals can find alternative ways to get the fraudulent refunds delivered to themselves rather than the real taxpayers. "We wanted to alert tax professionals to be on the lookout".

Although this latest development shows that with the help of technology, thieves are becoming savvier, an old trick is at the root of the majority of SIRF crimes. Ask your tax preparer if they are taking these steps.

The scam starts out as an erroneous return, that the taxpayer will then pay back out of their own pocket. They'll give you an IRS number. The fraudster wants the tax pro to click on the link or attachment and then enter their credentials.

The IRS doesn't contact consumers via email, social media, or text messaging channels, and would never request personal information through any of those platforms.

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Submit the check immediately to the appropriate IRS location (see below).

The second form involves a crafted phone call. I learned not to answer the phone - unless I recognize the number.

Another version of the scam uses automatic or robo calls to send a recorded message. Those trying an IRS impersonation scam might even know your name, address and other personal information.

Hambright said people who suspect they've been targeted should call the IRS.

A Berks County woman recently fell victim to a scam after she was told by a caller that she owed the IRS thousands of dollars in back taxes.

In the same way that you wouldn't leave your children in the hands of a babysitter you don't know, don't put your money and critical information about your life in the hands of someone you can't trust.

The IRS said it's happening because the scammers are hacking into the computers of tax preparers. But in a sign of how seriously it's taking the scam, the agency on Tuesday issued a second notice to tax preparers urging them to notify the agency, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, local police and their clients as soon as they discover a data breach.

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