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How to Avoid Tax Season Scams

  • March 12,2024
  • 3 minute read

Spotting and protecting yourself – and your loved ones – from fraud is becoming more challenging. Fraudsters are constantly inventing new ways to impersonate others and the rise in automated tools and artificial intelligence is making it even easier to do so.

This time of year, impersonation scams often include the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The good news is there are still simple ways to detect and prevent fraud by verifying who is actually contacting you.

Here are three practical tips to help you avoid the latest tax season scams:

NO, the IRS is NOT texting, emailing or friending you to request info or send a refund. According to, “The IRS doesn't initiate contact with taxpayers by email, text messages or social media channels to request personal or financial information.” In addition, the FTC advises that the IRS does NOT send tax refunds via text or email. If you receive such a message asking for your personal details or promising a refund, delete it and block the sender. It’s a scam!

It’s OK to politely end a conversation and hang up the phone. If you receive a phone call from a scammer, chances are they will pile on the pressure in the hopes that you’ll divulge information without thinking it through. Don’t take the bait! It’s perfectly OK to end the conversation, politely but firmly, without providing any personal information. If you believe it was a legitimate entity calling, contact them directly at their published phone number or through their official public website.

Odd mail delivery about an “unclaimed tax refund”? It’s a fake. The IRS also recently warned consumers about a new mail scam including a cardboard envelope from a delivery service. The enclosed letter includes the IRS masthead and mentions "your unclaimed refund" but, like many scams, includes contact information that does NOT belong to the IRS. It asks the recipient to send pictures of driver’s licenses, bank account data and other sensitive information that can be used by identify thieves.

At Abound, we’re always looking for new ways to educate our Members and community. Check out our website for the latest financial news. We also encourage you to sign up for national consumer alerts through and statewide consumer alerts here.

Together, we can fight fraud and keep your information safe during tax season and throughout the year!