IRS - New Phishing E-mail Campaign Targets Taxpayers

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has asked US taxpayers to be wary of new e-mail scam.

IRS Spokeswoman, Dianne Besunder, said that people had been continuously reporting to the agency about e-mails coming to them from the IRS asking them to reply. The purpose of e-mails was to help the user in getting a reimbursement on tax, a payment related to the economic stimulus, or even a notice about a tax review, as reported by Acorn-online on December 7, 2009.

But the IRS does not dispatch unsolicited e-mails, Ms. Besunder said. Thus, security experts stated that the IRS e-mails to someone only when that person first e-mails to the agency. Therefore, if anyone is informed about taxes filed in his name, or that his reimbursement has been credited to his account, he would receive the notification before he files his returns.

If anyone gets an e-mail that states it is from the IRS or takes him to an IRS website, then he shouldn't respond to it. He should not click on any attachment or link in such e-mails as they could have malware seeking to infect his PC.

However, in case anyone has already responded, then he should immediately act to stop possible ID theft, according to Ms. Besunder.

Taxpayers can find information on the IRS site that could help them to safeguard their financial and other personal details. Accordingly, they should forward the dubious e-mail to the IRS or mention the e-mail's Internet header to the agency. Such a header, which contains extra information, could assist the IRS in tracing e-mail sender. During 2009, taxpayers have sent over 33,000 such fraudulent e-mails to the IRS that indicated over 1,500 different campaigns.

Security experts state that after forwarding the e-mails, users should delete the messages immediately.

Besides, users can further help themselves by thwarting phishers' attacks by keeping in mind that several of these emanate outside from the US; therefore, the associated phishing e-mails frequently have grammatical errors and misspellings. Thus, it is important that computer users always have antivirus, firewall and anti-spam programs installed and have their applications and operating systems up-to-date.

Related article: IRS Cautions Taxpayers of Recent Email Scam

ยป SPAMfighter News - 17-12-2009

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