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More scams to steal tax refunds
Old 02-14-2018, 08:58 AM   #1
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More scams to steal tax refunds

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/irs-war...getting-worse/

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A tax scam aimed at stealing consumer refunds has ballooned, with the IRS reporting that the number of potential victims has soared from a few hundred to "several thousand in just days."

Uncovered in the first week of filing season, the con appears to have started in tax preparers' offices, where infected computers provided access to complete return data on thousands of consumers. The crooks are using the purloined data — including Social Security numbers, dependents data and even bank account information — to file refund claims on behalf of the victimized taxpayers.
The refund actually goes to the taxpayer and the amount received is substantially more than anticipated. There are several variations of the scam, but in one the scammer calls the taxpayer claiming to be the IRS, knows the exact refund amount, and demands the refund be returned or the taxpayer will be charged with fraud.

Sick.
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Old 02-14-2018, 09:12 AM   #2
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Oh boy. I was always concerned about tax preparer security- they are sitting ducks. I do my own, but my dad uses a local small office preparer.

That’s scary that the fake refund goes to the taxpayer and the scammer tries to get it from them.
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Old 02-18-2018, 06:40 AM   #3
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Most savvy people know the IRS never contacts you by phone.
So any phone call from the IRS is a scam! I have been contacted a few times by phone and I contacted the scammer back using a burner phone and wished him terminal brain cancer.
I think I was being too kind.
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Old 02-18-2018, 08:36 AM   #4
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"IRS" and "Windows Technical Support" scammers, I need to think of a way to mess with them. Maybe have them FedEx me something, at least this will cost them money.
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Old 02-18-2018, 10:10 AM   #5
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"IRS" and "Windows Technical Support" scammers, I need to think of a way to mess with them. Maybe have them FedEx me something, at least this will cost them money.
Since they are most likely calling from "boiler rooms", they won't be sending you anything --much less by a pricier method such as FedEx.

You're far better off tying them up on the phone, thereby wasting their only commodity, which is time. Check out YouTibe videos on others who have creatively handled said callers...or dream up your own so you'll be ready the next time they call.

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Old 02-18-2018, 10:33 AM   #6
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Most savvy people know the IRS never contacts you by phone.
So any phone call from the IRS is a scam! I have been contacted a few times by phone and I contacted the scammer back using a burner phone and wished him terminal brain cancer.
I think I was being too kind.
While I believe this, then why does the IRS ask you to provide your telephone number in the signature area of your 1040 form, in case they do want to contact you? Do they ever actually call people? I can see them calling if they have a specific question about your return and not to try to collect money from you, as the latter would be done only through the mail.
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Old 02-18-2018, 10:38 AM   #7
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Only time FTB (California tax office) calls someone is when they selected to have a return call in ×minutes and the caller always identifies with a name / employee #. Easier than waiting online

Never heard of IRS calling, thought it was always 1 letter, than 2, then demand for you to respond to them (& not a general IRS #)
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Old 02-18-2018, 10:39 AM   #8
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Most savvy people know the IRS never contacts you by phone.
That's what I thought too, but why does the IRS request a phone number on many forms? It's not always that of the paid preparer.
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Old 02-18-2018, 10:48 AM   #9
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I tried to skip the phone number query in the HR Block software, but it badgered me to complete the entry. Pretty sure I could've persisted, but I caved.
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Old 02-18-2018, 12:05 PM   #10
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"IRS" and "Windows Technical Support" scammers, I need to think of a way to mess with them. Maybe have them FedEx me something, at least this will cost them money.
Would be nice if we could match them up. "IRS" scam, meet "Windows Tech Support Scam", have them call each other and duke out their scam tactics on each other .
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Old 02-18-2018, 12:48 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by MrLoco View Post
Most savvy people know the IRS never contacts you by phone.
So any phone call from the IRS is a scam! I have been contacted a few times by phone and I contacted the scammer back using a burner phone and wished him terminal brain cancer.
I think I was being too kind.
What's a burner phone ?
And yes, you were being too kind
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Old 02-18-2018, 12:55 PM   #12
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I send the feds & state a little less than I 'estimate' every 3 months.
This way I end up owing in April
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Old 02-18-2018, 01:11 PM   #13
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What's a burner phone ?
A cheap prepaid phone, like a tracfone, that can be had for perhaps $5.
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Old 02-18-2018, 03:07 PM   #14
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A cheap prepaid phone, like a tracfone, that can be had for perhaps $5.
That's funny, cuz as it turns out, I have a type of 'burner phone'
From HSN Samsung Galaxy Luna Pro 5" One year service, 1500 minutes- 1500 texts-1500 mb data, car charger, ac charger, usb charger for $97.00

Use it for a year & then burn it
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Old 02-18-2018, 04:49 PM   #15
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I send the feds & state a little less than I 'estimate' every 3 months.
This way I end up owing in April
I make estimated tax payments once a year (mostly), so I make sure to pay less than my total so I pay the difference in April. And I make sure to be in a safe harbor, of course.
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Old 02-18-2018, 05:00 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by ownyourfuture View Post
I send the feds & state a little less than I 'estimate' every 3 months.
This way I end up owing in April
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Originally Posted by scrabbler1 View Post
I make estimated tax payments once a year (mostly), so I make sure to pay less than my total so I pay the difference in April. And I make sure to be in a safe harbor, of course.
Whether you actually owe taxes or are due a refund does nothing to prevent a scammer from filing a false return for a big refund.
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Old 02-18-2018, 05:02 PM   #17
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While I believe this, then why does the IRS ask you to provide your telephone number in the signature area of your 1040 form, in case they do want to contact you? Do they ever actually call people?
Yes, they do sometimes call before contacting by mail -- or they did back in 2009/2010 when I was audited due to reporting a bit of consulting income the year after I retired. An agent called to schedule the audit with the choices being at her office or at my home. No issues with the audit but I was surprised by the call as I was out of town at the time. I had provided my cell number on the return.
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Old 02-18-2018, 06:58 PM   #18
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Whether you actually owe taxes or are due a refund does nothing to prevent a scammer from filing a false return for a big refund.
But what would happen if I made my usual filing and sent a check for my owed amount, after someone else made a fraudulent return with my SSN and claimed a refund? I always thought the people who really got ripped off where the ones who were filing for a refund only to learn that someone else had filed and "stolen" their refund. In my case, I would have a PITA on my hands but would not be out any money I'd be trying to recover because I was sending them a check.
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Old 02-18-2018, 07:07 PM   #19
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I'm getting such a huge refund this year (1/2 back) that I'm changing my withholding to be only amount due this year. I may owe -- or not -- but I prefer to pay a little than get a refund. It was hard to figure what was going to be due 1st year FIREd
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Old 02-19-2018, 12:50 AM   #20
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But what would happen if I made my usual filing and sent a check for my owed amount, after someone else made a fraudulent return with my SSN and claimed a refund? I always thought the people who really got ripped off where the ones who were filing for a refund only to learn that someone else had filed and "stolen" their refund. In my case, I would have a PITA on my hands but would not be out any money I'd be trying to recover because I was sending them a check.
Your return would not be accepted, and then you would have to go through the process of declaring other returns fraudulent, etc. - paperwork, snail mail. Things would take a while to sort out.

The folks getting money back would still get their refund, but it might take a year. And paperwork hassles in the meantime.
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