SOURCE: US Tax Professionals

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February 23, 2017 13:40 ET

US Tax Accountant Cautions Public about the IRS Scams of 2017

US tax accountant publishes blog detailing an array of evolving tax scams related to identity theft and refund fraud

VANCOUVER, BC--(Marketwired - February 23, 2017) - As a firm that deals in cross-border taxation, US Tax Professionals has a general warning for the public. Every season, there are a slew of con artists who take advantage of the hectic tax season to try and trick taxpayers out of their hard-earned money. They may try to gain access to sensitive financial information, or even access to personal computers. For more, go to: http://www.us-taxprofessionals.com/newsletter.php#2

Mark Schiffer and his team of tax professionals are warning people to be on the lookout for the following scams in 2017:

Requesting fake tax payments:

The IRS has received reports of automated calls where scammers leave callback requests telling taxpayers to settle fake tax bills. These calls claim to be a final warning before legal action is taken. Taxpayers may also receive live calls from IRS impersonators, who may demand reduced payments that may be made on prepaid debit cards, gift cards, or wire transfers. Requesting any of these alternative payment methods is a clear indication of a scam.

Payment Demands for Federal Student Tax:

Telephone scammers are also targeting students and parents demanding payments for fictitious taxes, such as the Federal Student Tax. If the person does not comply, the scammer becomes aggressive and threatens to report the student to the police.

Fraudulent IRS bill for the Affordable Care Act:

The IRS has received numerous reports around the country of scammers sending fraudulent CP2000 notices for 2015. Generally, the scam involves an email or letter that includes the fake CP2000. The fraudulent notice includes a payment request that taxpayers mail a check made out to "I.R.S." to the "Austin Processing Center" at a Post Office Box address.

Soliciting W-2 information from payroll and human resources professionals:

Payroll and human resource professionals should be aware of a phishing email scheme where personal information on employees is requested. The email contains the actual name of the company's chief executive officer. In this scam, the CEO sends an email to a company payroll employee and requests a list of employees and financial and personal information, including Social Security Numbers (SSN).

Imitating software providers:

Tax professionals are even being targeted. In this case, a software company sends an email where the recipient is asked to download and install an important software update via a link. In actuality, this program is designed to track keystrokes and gain access to login information, passwords, and other sensitive data.

Verifying tax return information over the phone:

Scammers may call saying they have tax return information and need to verify a few details before processing the return. The scam tries to solicit personal information such as Social Security Numbers (SSN) or personal financial information, including bank numbers or credit cards.

Emails from the tax preparation industry:

These are designed to trick taxpayers into thinking they are official communications from the IRS or other industry related members. This is a phishing scheme. E-mails or text messages can seek information related to refunds, filing status, confirming personal information, ordering transcripts, and verifying PIN information.

What to do

When in doubt, ask what agency the caller/emailer is representing. Look it up online and call that agency directly to verify the information provided to you. If it's legit, they will help you proceed with what needs to be done-or you can always call the talented Mark Schiffer and his talented team of US Tax Professionals at (604) 949-1559.

About the Company

US Tax Professionals specialize in cross borders tax services for American citizens living in Canada and Mexico. Founded in 2013, they handle individual taxation, taxation and accounting for business, and accounting and taxation of alternative investments, including private equity funds and hedge funds.

For more information, visit http://www.us-taxprofessionals.com/ or call (604) 949-1559.

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