ATLANTA (February 7, 2018) – The Georgia Department of Revenue is passing on an alert from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) urging tax professionals to step up security and beware of phishing emails that secretly download malicious software that can steal client data. The IRS has identified a new scam that began with cyber criminals stealing data from several tax practitioners’ computers and filing fraudulent tax returns. In a new twist, the fraudulent returns in a few cases used the taxpayers’ real bank accounts for the deposit. A woman posing as a debt collection agency official then contacted the taxpayers to say a refund was deposited in error and asked the taxpayers to forward the money to her. This newest scam serves as a reminder to taxpayers that they should be alert to any unusual activity such as receiving a tax transcript or tax refund they did not request. Taxpayers who receive a direct deposit refund that they did not request should take the following steps: Contact the Automated Clearing House Department of the bank/financial institution where the direct deposit was received and have them return the refund to the IRS. Call the IRS toll-free at (800) 829-1040 (individual) or (800) 829-4933 (business) to explain why the direct deposit is being returned. Interest may accrue on the erroneous refund. Tax professionals are reminded to contact their state’s IRS Stakeholder Liaison, who will notify appropriate IRS officials and serve as a point of contact. Suspicious tax-related phishing emails should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. ( Stepping up Security and Reporting Data Theft, Ga. Dept. of Rev., 02/02/2018 .)
For more information on this and similar scams, please read last year’s blog post, Different Year, Same IRS Dirty Dozen. Don’t forget to check back during tax season for this year’s IRS Dirty Dozen.
© 2018 Thomson Reuters/Tax & Accounting. All Rights Reserved.
Any use of information contained in this blog post, including reproduction, modification, distribution or republication, without the prior written consent of TrueWealth, is strictly prohibited. We have taken all reasonable care and precaution to ensure that the information is fair and accurate, or has been compiled from sources believed to be reliable. Nevertheless, we do not make any representations or warranty, express or implied, as to the accuracy, completeness, or fitness for any purpose or use of the information. The information may not in all cases be current and it is subject to continuous change. Accordingly, you should not rely on any of the information as authoritative or a substitute for the exercise of your own skill and judgment in making any investment or other decision. Any references to rates of return are for illustrative purposes only and should not be construed as an estimate or guarantee of future performance. We shall not be liable for any direct, indirect, or consequential loss arising from any use of or reliance on the information from this brochure. The recommendations developed by TrueWealth are based upon the professional judgment of TrueWealth and its individual advisory affiliates and neither TrueWealth nor its affiliates can guarantee the results of any of their recommendations. Clients at all times may elect unilaterally to follow or ignore completely, or in part, any information, recommendation, or advice given by TrueWealth and its affiliates.