As the filing deadline quickly approaches, Better Business Bureau serving Alaska, Oregon and Western Washington is warning tax-paying consumers to file cautiously.
On the Phone:
On March 20, 2014, the Treasury Inspector General for Taxpayer Administration issued a statement that more than 20,000 people have collectively lost more than $1 million in the “largest ever” phone fraud scam of its kind. The Washington State Attorney General’s Office issued a similar alert.
On the Internet:
E-filing continues to be a primary target for cyber thieves, who can collect personal data and divert refunds to their own accounts without the victims’ knowledge.
Tax-related identity theft is the number one threat to taxpayers, according to the IRS. BBB issued a release in January 2014 which highlights the increase in threats and what filers can do to protect identities. Read Tax Season Brings Out Identity Thieves for more information.
Remember, the filing deadline is April 15, 2014. Failure to file may result in fees and penalties. For more information on protecting identities, visit BBB News & Events. To report phishing or tax-related identity theft, visit irs.gov/uac/Report-Phishing.