The Internal Revenue Service is warning taxpayers of a new ‘unclaimed refund’ scam. This scam attempts to mislead people into believing they are owed a tax refund. This is another example of identity thieves posing as the IRS in hopes of tricking people into providing valuable personal information – allowing them to steal identities and money.
Taxpayers have received fraudulent tax refund notices delivered through the mail. The notice arrives in a cardboard envelope with an enclosed letter that reads, “In relation to your unclaimed refund.” The letter also includes the IRS masthead with contact information and a phone number that does not belong to the IRS. Because the scammers send physical letters that are legitimate in appearance, it increases the chances of luring taxpayers into emailing or calling to provide sensitive information The letter initiates a request for detailed information that identity thieves can use to file a tax refund or access other financial information. The requested information includes driver’s license number, cellphone number, Social Security number, bank account type and bank routing information.
It is also important to note, the IRS never initiates contact with taxpayers by email, text or social media regarding a bill or tax refund. Be aware of this and do not click on any unsolicited communication claiming to be the IRS as it may be a scam.