Federal income tax forms may be due every April 15, but tax scams have no such deadlines. They are threats that are constantly present and one must be wary of them as well as know how to detect them for what they really are.
An article by The Motley Fool outlines a guide on how to avoid three kinds of tax scams. The first one is Fraudulent Returns, which involves a tax return having been filed by someone who wants to take your refund.
Since only one tax return per Social Security Number is allowed, it is recommended that you file your tax return as soon as you can so that there is a lesser possibility that your money can be stolen. Also keep your credit card details and Social Security Number to yourself; do not publish it intentionally or throw it out in the trash for someone to find.
A second scam involves frauds calling you via the telephone and giving instructions on how to send over payments. You can tell that this is a scam because asking for sensitive information over the phone, demanding payments at the threat of imprisonment, or refusing appeal opportunities are things the IRS would not do.
Lastly, there are Phishing Scams. These are the kinds that involve receiving an email or a text message designed to look like they come from the establishment and then proceed to obtain your Social Security Number, credit card number, and other sensitive details.
According to the Motley Fool, the IRS does not do email, text messages, Facebook or any other kind of social media. As such, receiving a phishing email from the “IRS” should set off warning bells in your head.
If ever you become a potential victim of these tax scams, report it to the IRS at (800) 829-1040.