Got a Text About Money From the IRS? It’s Probably a Scam

Tax season means more than financial forms filling your mailbox or Turbo Tax emails urging you to file early — it’s also prime time for scammers to impersonate the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) in an attempt to steal personal information, money or a fraudulent tax refund. In fact, the agency says it’s noticed a “recent spike in fraudsters sending taxpayers fake IRS messages through mobile devices with references to COVID-19 and stimulus payments.”

Does the tax office send text messages?

The IRS never initiates contact by email, text or social media channels regarding a bill or refund, and the agency won’t request PIN numbers, passwords or other similar access information for credit cards, banks or other financial accounts. Plus, the IRS won’t demand immediate payment without giving you a chance to question or appeal what’s owed. Link :

Among the most common scams the IRS receives reports about is one that asks for bank account information in exchange for a rebate. In this case, a fake IRS employee says the person is eligible for a $1,200 Economic Impact Payment and that they need their bank account number to direct deposit the funds.

In addition to asking for bank account information, scammers may claim that you owe taxes and threaten to immediately arrest or deport you if you don’t pay up. They’ll often try to get you to send them cash or a prepaid debit card, or they may ask you to use a wire transfer or a reloadable prepaid card to make the payment.