The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is warning taxpayers of two new approaches being used by scam artists to obtain personal data. Stolen data can be used to file false tax returns in your name, or to open fake accounts.
The first new scam comes through a telephone call in which thieves, posing as IRS employees, tell prospective victims that they owe back taxes which must be paid immediately or they will have their Social Security numbers suspended or cancelled. This scam is doubly deceitful: the IRS does not make initial contact with taxpayers over the telephone, nor does the IRS have the authority to cancel or suspend an individual’s Social Security number.
The second scam uses regular mail to send letters threatening liens or levies for unpaid taxes. These letters often come from the “Bureau of Tax Enforcement,” an organization which does not exist. Since this attempt at data theft comes through “snail mail” taxpayers may be more inclined to trust its message.
If you receive a letter with this or a similar message demanding payment of taxes, or a phone call that is suspicious, do not respond. Instead, contact our Tax Department at (781) 407-0300 for guidance on how to determine if the demand is legitimate or a scam.