Monday, May 23, 2011

Economic Stimulus Check Initiative

From Margie Tann iSekurity
Source: Wachovia

iSekurity wants you to be aware of the Economic Stimulus Check initiative. Emails and phone calls are being made by fraudsters in attempt to collect your personal and financial information. This fraud is taking multiple forms and you need to be aware. They all centered around alleged functions of the United States Department of the Treasury ... but, are driven by a singular criminal goal - to steal your money and your identity.

Please be aware of the following scams that have been circulating related to the Economic Stimulus Check initiative:

- Rebate Phone Call: In this scam, consumers receive a phone call from someone identifying themselves as an IRS employee. The caller tells the targeted victim that they are eligible for a sizable rebate for filing their taxes early. The caller then states that they need the customer's bank account information in order to directly deposit the rebate. If the customer refuses, they are told that they cannot receive the rebate.

- Refund Email Scam: Customer receives an email, which falsely claims to come from the IRS, informing the recipient that he or she is eligible for a tax refund for a specific amount, and instructs the recipient to click on a link in the e-mail to access a refund claim form.

- Audit Email Scam: Customer receives an email notifying the recipient that his or her tax return will be audited. The customer either clicks on a link or contacts a phone number included in the email. This is the first scam the IRS is aware of that uses this tactic to get the victim to respond.

- Tax Law Change Email Scam: The email is addressed to businesses, accountants and "Treasury" managers. It instructs them to download information on tax law changes by clicking on a series of links to publications on businesses, estate taxes, excise taxes, exempt organizations and IRAs and other retirement plans.

- Paper Check Phone Call Scam: In a recently documented telephone scam, a caller claims to be an IRS employee who is calling because the IRS sent a check to the customer which has not yet been negotiated. The caller states that because the check has not been cashed, the IRS wants to verify the individual's bank account number.

- Better Business Bureau Rebate Scams: In addition to the above rebate scams, IRS officials are also warning businesses of emails that appear to be complaints forwarded to them by the Better Business Bureau. Businesses receiving such questionable e-mails should contact the local BBB directly and not respond to the email.

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