Beware scammers posing as IRS to discuss your recently filed tax return

Now that the tax deadline has passed, many are looking forward to getting their refund checks.

But it’s also the time when you should be on guard for potential scams from people claiming to be from the IRS.

Hawaii’s Better Business Bureau is warning people that scammers are calling, claiming the IRS is trying to get a hold of them about their recently filed return. That’s when they’ll start asking questions, hoping to gain as much personal information about you as possible before hanging up.

Callers are also posing as debt collectors, asking for money via wire transfer or prepaid debit cards.

If you’re expecting a check in the mail, you’ll also want to be on guard.

“We’ve seen multiple video clips from different homeowners and townhouse associations where you see people going door to door, and they’ll ring the doorbell to see if someone’s home first before they try and go through the mailbox and see if your tax refund check may be sitting there,” said Greg Dunn, Hawaii Better Business Bureau CEO.

The BBB says refund checks are processed faster for those who filed online.

“One of the other reasons that it goes in faster if you have electronic deposit is if you’ve used the same method of receipt of payment for many years. That assists the IRS in reducing the risk that this is a fraudulent return,” Dunn said.

Be wary of phone calls from people claiming to be from the IRS, even if the caller ID shows IRS. You can call the local IRS office directly if you have any questions.

Click here for information from the IRS that can help you determine if someone from the IRS is indeed on the phone.

Keep in mind that the IRS initiates most contacts through regular mail delivered by the United States Postal Service, but there are special circumstances in which the IRS will call or come to a home or business. Even then, taxpayers will generally first receive several letters from the IRS in the mail.

If you have a consumer concern or are interested in becoming an Action Line volunteer, give us a call at 591-0222 weekdays between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. or send an email to actionline@khon2.com.

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