Now that W-2’s are on their way out to employees, it’s prime time for thieves to try to scam both employers and employees into giving up money and personal information. Using scary fake emails or fraudulent phone calls, these scammers try to trick you into giving up bank account information, passwords, or accounts, and even get people to wire money to them under the guise of you or your company owing taxes. So-called “phishing” scams rely on official-looking emails, and those fraudulent phone calls rely on pushy scare tactics too. (Like this scam last year. And this one!)
Some of the latest scams involve “tax transcripts” and ask for money to be wired, supposedly to the IRS! But here are a few links that can help you protect yourself and your business.
- The IRS has a Tax Scams/Consumer Alerts page which includes information on how to tell if the communication you’ve received is really from the IRS.
- How to avoid “phishing” scams— official-looking emails that are actually attempts by thieves to get money or information– by PC Magazine.
- No matter how pushy the email, document, or call is, there’s nothing wrong with taking the time to actually call the entity supposedly contacting you to verify that the contact is genuine.
- Tax Season Is Open Season (from last year, but might still be helpful).
Remember, the deadline for your business to issue W-2’s is January 31st!