The latest IRS “Dirty Dozen” was recently released providing the top 12 scams for 2021…

Phishing: Creating fake emails or websites in order to steal personal information.

Fake Charities: Exploiting the current pandemic or other natural disasters by posing as a fake charity and taking money from well-intentioned people.

Impersonator Phone Calls: Calls come from criminals who claim to be with the IRS and use threats to try and collect payment.

Social Media Scams: Strangers gain information from social media and pose as a close friend or family member in order steal their identity.

EIP or Refund Theft: Criminals file false tax returns and provide information to the IRS to divert refunds to the wrong address or bank account.

Senior Fraud: Scammers target elderly people with the hope they lack the technological knowledge to recognize a scam.

Scams Targeting Non-English Speakers: Con-artists prey on the lack of communication skills and pose as an IRS official using threats or urgency.

Unscrupulous Return Preparers: Dishonest “ghost” tax preparers who expose clients to filing mistakes, fraud and loss of refunds.

Offer in Compromise Mills: Misleading tax debt resolution companies.

Promoted Abusive Arrangements: Promoters peddle false hopes of large tax deductions through deals that cheat the system.

Unemployment Scams: Filers submit application using fake information, employer collusion causing unreported wages, state employees inappropriately use credentials to access and change claims.

Ransomware: Software is inadvertently downloaded providing scammer full access to the company data and locks out all other users. A ransom demand is made for returning the data.

To avoid such scams, know that in general the IRS will NOT do the following:

  • Call to demand immediate payment without giving instruction on how to pay to the United States Treasury.
  • Demand payment without giving you the opportunity to question or appeal the amount they say you owe.
  • Threaten you with calling law enforcement to have you arrested, revoke your driver’s license or revoke your business license.
  • Threaten immigration status and/or deportation.

Also, the IRS will issue a bill to taxpayers prior to any collection efforts.