BBB Warns of Tax Scams
Taxes are stressful enough, but tax scams are the most prominent kind of scam out there.
Anna Bruggeman with the Better Business Bureau says the most common is the imposter scam.
"Scammers pose as IRS agents and they try to instill fear into the victim by demanding money or threatening jail time. They may even spoof phone numbers so the call appears to be coming from the IRS or local law enforcement."
There are also scams involving people who claim they can reduce tax liabilities to get money or personal info and another that has people steal W-2s and file with someone else's info.
Bruggeman says there are ways to protect yourself.
"E-file only from a secure computer, make sure anti-virus software is up to date, and never use public wi-fi to file your tax returns. Don't file the taxes from a link in an email, and you want to definitely make sure that you mail your tax returns from a post office or a secure mailbox."
There were 200 claims of tax scams to the BBB in Washington last year, but Bruggeman estimates the number of actual cases was close to 8,000.