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Security Update: Protecting yourself from Tax Time Scams

As tax season shifts into high gear, many criminals are also stepping up their efforts to rob you of your resources. These schemes & scams seek access to your information for fraudulent purposes. Additionally, people can seek to falsely collect amounts you might owe to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and pursue other tactics, such as:

· Citing IRS form 1099 as proof that individuals can access secret accounts the federal government maintains for every U.S. citizen

· Using false tax-preparing Web sites to secure filers’ personal data

· Pretending to be IRS agents with a phony badge number and name, telling individuals they owe the IRS money and must pay with a pre-loaded debit card or face charges

There are, however, steps you can take to protect yourself:

•Anyone who purports to be from the IRS and asks for your Social Security Number should be dismissed. The agency will only communicate with you through the mail on official letterhead. If you get one of these calls, hang up. If you see one of these emails, delete it

•Avoid phishing attempts, especially this time of year. Never reply to emails, texts or pop-up messages asking for your personal, tax, or financial information. Legitimate businesses don’t ask you for this through unsecured channels

•Never click on links when you don’t know and can’t verify the source.

•Be wary of doing your taxes online or conducting financial transactions over public Wi-Fi hotspots. These networks are often vulnerable to hacking

•And please visit us here to see how we’re working to safeguard your resources.