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Tax-period Timed Phishing E-Mails Surge Nearly 400%, Cautions IRS

IRS has reinstated one citizen alert regarding certain types of e-mails because it has already observed a near 400% increase in malicious software and phishing instances in the current tax-period. The said electronic mails have been crafted for duping taxpayers who imagine the messages are IRS' official communications or someone else within the tax industry such as companies making tax software. According to IRS, the phishing scams may direct taxpayers to provide information on very many topics. The e-mails may ask details associated with filing status, refunds, PIN information verification, transcript orderings and personal information substantiation.

Immediately after the tax-period's mid-term, the January phishing trend remained same during H1-February as IRS officials got 363 reports in comparison with 201 received during whole February 2015. Overall, till mid-February 2016, IRS got 1,389 complaints regarding tax-related malware/phishing messages, an unbelievably high number for US authorities. Softpedia posted this, February 19, 2016.

IRS cautioned that when people followed the web-links inside the above kind of e-mails, they got led onto sites which mimicked the IRS authorized site i.e. IRS.gov. The copycat websites directed the users to provide personal information, particularly their Social Security Numbers. The websites could as well contain malware that would contaminate the users' PCs so as to let criminals gain admission into the formers files alternatively record their keystrokes for garnering more information.

Tax officials have been citing phishing scams that also solicit victims' Internet credentials for accessing the tax agency's services like the Tax Professional PTIN System. But according to IRS, it usually doesn't communicate with taxpayers over electronic mail urging towards providing their financial/other personal information.

Thus, anybody receiving a text message or e-mail, like the above, mustn't answer in and also not pursue any web-link. Indeed, such messages/e-mails should be reported to IRS via dispatching them at phishing@irs.gov. And if anybody feels sure there's an undesirable issue with his A/C, then he should tell the IRS or his tax-preparer.

Similarly a telephone call that tries to 'phish' off the receiver's information must be disconnected, while the receiver should dial 800-366-4484 for Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration as also inform Federal Trade Commission.

» SPAMfighter News - 2/25/2016

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