(COLUMBUS, Ohio)—As Ohioans file taxes and await their tax refunds, Attorney General Richard Cordray today warns that scammers are using IRS phishing ploys to try to steal personal information.
“This tax season, scammers are pretending to be the IRS to make their ploys seem legitimate,” Attorney General Cordray said. “They’re using the IRS logo to send phony e-mails with phony tax information. The real IRS won’t send e-mails to discuss this information.”
In one case, a Washington County consumer reported receiving an e-mail message on IRS letterhead. The message said the IRS would send her tax refund to her credit card company. (Suspiciously, her husband, who filed jointly, did not receive this message.) To receive her refund, the e-mail said the consumer had to click on a link that said “Complete Formular.”
Similarly, a Franklin County consumer received an official-looking e-mail that indicated she was eligible for an additional IRS refund.
Attorney General Cordray reminded consumers that the IRS does not discuss tax account information with consumers via e-mail and that they should watch for red flags, including:
- Requests for your personal or financial information, such as your Social Security number or credit card number.
- Poor grammar or illogical statements.
- Links that direct you to a third-party Web site (do not click on these links but rather move your mouse over the link to see the address).
- Threats that you won’t receive your tax refund if you don’t respond.
If you receive a suspicious e-mail that claims to come from the IRS, forward it to the IRS at Phishing@IRS.gov. Remember not to click on any links in the message.