How the Retired Can Steer of Tax Scams

ElitePersonalFinance
Last Update: January 18, 2021 Save Money Scams

In the US, fraudulent calls are not in tax seasons. For instance, on the Tax Day of 2018, there were 143 million negative robocalls, according to Transaction Network Services.

Each passing year, as of April, which is the deadline for filing tax returns, approaches an increase in scams targeting taxpayers, especially the retired. These scams differ in how they occur; they intend to steal taxpayers’ money or steal an identity.

Tips that can help retirees to stay safe from tax scams:

  • Avoid the rush to pay.
  • Use strong passwords.
  • Don’t let Everyone in.
  • Bin all phishing emails.
  • Stay vigilant when making online submissions.
  • Know who ghost preparers are.
  • Stop giving out personal information via the phone.

Keeping vigilant and detecting fraud can help you stay safe from these thugs. Furthermore, putting in place measures to deal with personal information in the best possible way boosts the chances of keeping your money safe. Here are important heads up to help you steer clear tax fraud in 2019.

Avoid Rush to Pay

Scammers have this trend of making calls and claims of working with the government. In most cases, they ask you to pay right away and possibly offer a special refund if you make the requested payments.

These scammers are confident to the extent that they might threaten dire consequences, like an arrest, if you don’t pay your taxes right away. Other than a phone call, they might send an email or even a letter requesting you to make payment upon receipt. It’s safe to be suspicious each time you receive a call, an email, or a regular mail asking you to pay immediately.

Use Strong Passwords

We are approaching Tax day, and one way you can use to prevent hackers from breaking into your account and do their dirty work is by reviewing your current passwords. For example, many people love to post their children and pets’ names on social sites and use the same names as their passwords. It’s time you avoid that. Make your passwords strong by using a combination of letters, symbols, upper and lower cases.

Avoid Letting Everyone in

It’s likely that one of these beautiful days, a person will knock on your door with the claims that they are employees of the IRS, ask for proof. It’s important to note that real ones from the IRS have two ID forms. Even if these individuals are legitimately from the IRS, it’s within your rights to know the purpose of their visit. Why? The IRS people will mostly contact you using regular mail. Be even more worried if the person asks for money. It’s clear from the IRS website that if you need to make a payment, it should only be to the “United States Treasury” or direct payments via its site at irs.gov/payments.

Bin All Phishing Emails

It’s common for scammers to send emails requesting personal information. Unsurprisingly, those emails look official; they even bear the IRS logo and other essential markings, which would easily sway you into believing that it’s from the IRS.

Such messages will, in most cases, ask you to share your information to facilitate the refund. Among the information, these scammers may ask to include your bank account or PIN. Do not reply to these emails, instead mark them as spam and send them to trash emails.

Know Ghost Preparers

Today, the scammers do not want to look like scammers. Today, the fraudster acts like professional tax preparers so that it’s easy to believe them. Their intention remains milking you.

These scammers promise the customers a big refund, which can be hard to refuse. If you come by such an approach, it will be vital to ask for verification. Fraudsters also have a valid 2019 Preparer Tax Identification Number, which identifies different preparers when signing a customer’s return and forwarding it to the IRS.

The scammer who poses as the preparers will charge you fees; however, they won’t sign(at the back) your documents as it is required of all the preparers are necessary. They will go ahead and print your return before asking that you sign it and mail it to the IRS.

Stop Giving out Personal Information through Your Phone

The scammers have advanced with time and use caller ID spoofing, making a taxpayer believe that they are receiving a call from the IRS. They are good at creating a background that sounds like the call is from a government office. Before they call, these scammers usually have one or two pieces of information about you, which, when they spell out, makes them look like they are real. If they ask for your personal information, such as your Social Security number, do yourself a favor by hanging up.

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