PORTAGE CO. (PRESS RELEASE)-- The Portage County Sheriff's Department and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) remind consumers to avoid identity theft scams that use the IRS name, logo, or website in an attempt to convince taxpayers that the scam is a genuine communication from the IRS. Scammers may use other federal agency names, such as the US Department of Treasury.
In an identity theft scam, a fraudster, often poses as a trusted government, financial or business institution or official, tries to trick a victim into revealing personal and financial information, such as credit card numbers and passwords, bank account numbers and passwords, Social Security numbers and more. Generally, identity thieves use someone's personal data to steal his or her financial accounts, run up charges on the victim's existing credit cards, apply for new loans, credit cards, services, or benefits in the victim's name and even file fraudulent tax returns.
The scams may take place through email, fax, or phone. When they take place via email, they are called "phishing" scams. Remember the following points;
The IRS does not initiate taxpayer communication through email.
-The IRS does not request detailed personal information through email.
-The IRS does not send email requesting your PIN numbers, passwords, or similar access information for credit cards, banks, or other financial accounts.
If you receive an email from someone claiming to be the IRS or directing you to an IRS site.
-Do not reply to the email.
-Do not open any attachments. Attachments may contain malicious code that will infect your computer.
Use the following steps to report the email or bogus website to the IRS. If you receive an email or find a website you think is pretending to be the IRS.