Donâ€™t automatically believe the Internal Revenue Service or other government agency is calling you â€“ even if your caller ID tells you so. And donâ€™t assume that just because you receive an email claiming to be from the IRS, it really is.
The Internal Revenue Service and the United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team (CERT) are warning taxpayers to be especially vigilant â€“ not only during tax season, but also throughout the year. Sophisticated telephone and email scams are on the rise, using so-called â€œphishingâ€ campaigns to obtain sensitive personal information from unsuspecting individuals.
In some states, for example, one popular scam involves using a bogus Treasurerâ€™s Office caller ID and phoning people to tell them there is a complaint against them or they owe taxes that must be paid at once.
The IRS and CERT urge everyone to be on guard. The IRS, as well as state treasurersâ€™ offices, never initiates contact with taxpayers by email, text messages or phone. Be especially wary of any request for PIN numbers, passwords or related access information for credit cards, banks and other financial accounts.
More information about popular scams, how to avoid being a victim and how to report suspicious communications is available at: https://www.us-cert.gov/ncas/tips/ST15-001.