Phishing Scams Targets Tax Preparers. The IRS issued a warning to tax preparers to be vigilant of a scam that attempts to get access to the victim’s E-Filing Identification Number (EFIN). The hackers use fraudulent email accounts to obtain the victim’s identity and steal their clients’ information. If they are successful, the cybercriminals can pretend to be the tax preparer and file fraudulent tax returns for refunds.
The email states it is from “IRS Tax E-Filing” and the subject line states “Verifying your EFIN before e-filing”. The body of the mail is asking the users to provide their EFIN number and their driver’s license number. The IRS is advising all tax professionals who received the scam email to save the email as a file and then send it as an attachment to the IRS.
The phishing scam tries to get the receiver to perform a task and let them know the dire consequences if they do not. The links or attachment in the email is set up to gather sensitive data or to infiltrate ransomware to the network.
Here are a few tips on how to catch phishing emails and what to do if you receive one:
- Check the sender’s domain– If the email states that the sender is the IRS, but the domain is different when you hover on the email address, then that is a clue that it’s a phishing scam.
- The email asks for private information– Most of the time, the IRS will not ask for your private information via email. When in doubt, call them to confirm the validity of the email.
- Verify the link in the body of the email– If the body of the email contains a link, do not click on it. Hover your mouse to see if the domain associated with the link is a suspicious address.
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