HAMPTON ROADS, Va. (WAVY) – AARP is warning consumers about early tax season scams.
Some of the biggest early tax season scams include mail thieves, IRS impersonators, refund rip-offs and bad advice.
Mail thieves target mailboxes containing documents with personal information in order to steal identities. Consider getting a locking mailbox or renting a P.O. box. You can also have your mail held at the post office. If you haven’t received expected tax documents by now, call the sender.
The IRS never initiates communication through email, so if you receive an email asking for personal information or containing links to documents, do not respond and do not click the links. Those links may contain malware. The IRS will only contact you by mail in a sealed envelope.
File your tax return early to keep your refund from getting into the wrong hands. Tax ID scammers usually begin filing returns by mid to late February.
Beware of promises of ‘free’ government money or ‘secret’ tax breaks. They may belong to tax preparers who want to steal your identity or are looking for easy money. Do your homework on potential tax preparers.
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