Beware of tax scams

It’s likely to be a daily occurrence: Your e-mail inbox contains at least one message touting a too-good-to-be-true offer. You probably shake your head and delete the pleas from mysterious mock millionaires who need your help recovering imaginary inheritances.

But what do you do when the e-mail has the Internal Revenue Service web address in the FROM box and a subject line that claims you’re about to be audited by the Criminal Investigation Division?

*Step 1. Stop and think. You’ve never given the IRS your e-mail address in relation to your tax return. Even if you had, the government does not request personal information such as your bank account, credit card, or social security numbers via e-mail.

*Step 2. Without clicking on any links or responding to the e-mail, forward the entire message to the IRS (phishing@irs.gov). The IRS established this e-mail box in 2006 to investigate and shut down online fraud.

Note: You will not get a response, either online or off, from the IRS when you report scams.

*Step 3. Delete the e-mail.

Besides the audit subterfuge, other common e-mail tax schemes to know and avoid include a promise of additional money due, bogus government grants, and requests for you to check the status of your refund.

Tax scams never die, and they can be taxing. Before you react to any communication from — or purporting to be from — the Internal Revenue Service, contact us. We’re here to help you resolve tax issues.

About Brenda J. McGivern, CPA

Brenda McGivern started her own certified public accounting and management consulting firm in October 2001. The full service CPA firm provides tax and accounting solutions to meet the needs of today’s small business and individual. Brenda McGivern has become a trusted advisor and valuable resource her clients rely on for timely, accurate assistance when they need it.

Before starting the firm, she worked as an accountant for three years at a local firm and prior to that five years at a large international CPA firm in Boston. She has performed the following tax services: federal, state and local tax planning, international tax planning, estate and succession planning, mergers and acquisitions, capital retention and IRS representation. She has also coordinated assurance engagements, such as financial statement audits, reviews and compilations from the planning phase through the reporting phase. She has prepared and reviewed regulatory filings for numerous regulatory agencies including the Security and Exchange Commission.

Prior to these positions she was selected from over 2,000 candidates into an eight-person intensive financial management program at an international technology company. The program consisted of graduate level classroom study and two six-month rotational assignments in financial operations.

She graduated cum laude from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and holds a Bachelors Degree in Business Administration with a concentration in accounting. McGivern also holds a license in Massachusetts as a Certified Public Accountant and is a member of the American Society of Certified Public Accountants and the Massachusetts Society of Certified Public Accountants. She resides in Stoughton, Massachusetts with her husband Brian, and their sons Sean, Ryan and Conor and their dog, Davis.

This entry was posted in IRS Articles, Tax, Tax Fraud and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply