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  • Writer's pictureEncompass IT Solutions

Protect Your Finances: Key Cybersecurity Tips for Tax Season 2024

Updated: 2 days ago

irs tax scam

Tax season brings the annual rush to file returns but also a surge in cyber threats targeting individuals and businesses. In the digital age, cybersecurity is paramount to protect sensitive financial information from falling into the wrong hands. As we gear up for tax season 2024, let’s delve into the top tax scams every business owner should be wary of, and crucial cybersecurity practices to thwart these malicious attempts.

Tax season is looming, and the threat of tax scams comes with it. These fraudulent schemes result in financial losses and jeopardize personal and sensitive data security. According to recent reports, taxpayers suffered a staggering $5.7 billion in losses due to tax scams and fraud in 2022 alone. In this article, we'll unveil the prevalent tax scams of 2024, empowering business owners to shield themselves against cyber threats.

Understanding IRS Communication Methods: The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) employs specific communication channels, primarily physical mail, to contact taxpayers. Beware of scams soliciting personal or financial information via email, text messages, or social media platforms, as these are not legitimate IRS practices. If in doubt, refer to credible sources to verify the authenticity of any IRS communication.

Top Tax Scams to Watch Out For:

  1. Refund Scam: Fraudsters lure unsuspecting individuals with promises of unclaimed refunds through deceptive letters or emails. Exercise caution and avoid providing sensitive personal details to unauthorized sources, such as driver's license images.

  2. Identity Theft: Cybercriminals exploit stolen personal information to file fraudulent tax returns and claim refunds. Safeguard your identity by applying for an Identity Protection PIN from the IRS and promptly reporting any suspicious activity.

  3. ERC Scam: The Employee Retention Credit (ERC) has become a target for scammers offering exaggerated promises and charging exorbitant fees. Familiarize yourself with the official requirements for the ERC and beware of misleading advertisements.

  4. "Impact Payment" Scam: Beware of phishing emails purporting to be from the IRS regarding economic impact payments. Exercise caution and refrain from clicking on suspicious links or providing confidential information.

  5. "Additional Information Needed" Scam: Fraudulent emails requesting tax forms directly from taxpayers indicate scam attempts. Disregard such messages and report them to the IRS promptly.

Enhancing Cybersecurity Measures:

  1. File Early: Filing your taxes early reduces the window for scammers to exploit your information and claim refunds fraudulently.

  2. Vet Tax Preparers: Thoroughly vet tax preparers and exercise caution when entrusting sensitive financial information. Avoid preparers making unrealistic promises of substantial refunds.

  3. Explore Fraud Protection Services: Consider enlisting the services of fraud protection agencies to bolster your defenses against cyber threats.

As tax season approaches, staying vigilant against tax scams and bolstering cybersecurity measures are imperative for safeguarding your finances and sensitive data. By remaining informed about prevalent scams and implementing robust security practices, you can effectively fortify your defenses and thwart cyber threats.

Protect your business from cyber threats with a comprehensive cybersecurity assessment. Click here to schedule your free assessment and fortify your defenses against evolving cyber threats.

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