The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) sounded the alarm about a new phishing scam in which cybercriminals are sending out fraudulent emails impersonating the IRS, claiming the attachments are tax transcripts, to fool recipients into clicking on and opening files containing malware that could infect their computers.
The scam email bears an attachment labeled “Tax Account Transcript” or something similar and the subject line uses some variation of the phrase “tax transcript”.
If you receive an email like this, do not open the email or the attachment. If you are using a work computer and you do open it, notify your company’s technology professionals as soon as possible. This malware is problematic for businesses, as the malware could spread throughout the network and potentially take months to successfully remove.
Tax transcripts, which are summaries of your tax records and history, are available online, and taxpayers do need access to an email account in order to register with the IRS. However, the IRS reminds taxpayers it does not send unsolicited emails to the public and the agency would not email a sensitive document such as a tax transcript.
As we approach tax time, there will be numerous scams through which thieves try to steal your identity, your money, and sensitive information from your computer. It is important to protect your information and only open emails and attachments from reputable sources.
If you have questions about IRS impersonation scams involving emails or phone calls, contact your Christianson tax professional.