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Scamsters ready to rip off taxpayers

1/24/2014, 6 a.m.

The IRS is warning taxpayers not to fall victim to tax scams. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is, the IRS says.

It is encouraging citizens who know of a tax fraud to report it by completing and sending Form 3949-A, Information Referral, to Internal Revenue Service, Fresno, CA 93888.

The form is available at www.irs.gov or by calling 1-800-829-3676 to order by mail.

Here are some other tips:

n “Truth About Frivolous Tax Arguments” – The IRS will process more than 150 million tax returns this year, and it says that if someone tells you that you don’t have to pay taxes, you should check out “Truth About Frivolous Tax Arguments” on IRS.gov that addresses some of the more common false “legal” arguments made by people who oppose federal tax laws. Each contention is briefly explained, followed by a discussion of the legal authority that rejects the contention. The second section deals with frivolous arguments encountered in collection-due process cases. The final section illustrates penalties imposed on those pursuing frivolous cases.

n Use of IRS name or logo – The IRS has issued several consumer warnings about the fraudulent use of the IRS name or logo by scamsters trying to gain access to consumers’ financial information to steal their identity and assets.

Scamsters will use the regular mail, telephone, fax or email to set up their victims. When identity theft takes place over the Internet (email), it is called phishing. The IRS does not initiate taxpayer communications through email. Unsolicited email claiming to be from the IRS, or from an IRS-related component such as EFTPS, should be reported to phishing@irs.gov.

Additionally, clicking on attachments to or links within an unsolicited email claiming to come from the IRS may download a malicious virus onto your computer.

Consumers also may report instances of IRS-related phishing attempts and fraud to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration at 1-800-366-4484.