The Internal Revenue Service warned taxpayers against telephone scammers targeting students and parents during the back-to-school season and demanding payments for non-existent taxes, such as the “Federal Student Tax.”
People should be on the lookout for IRS impersonators calling students and demanding that they wire money immediately to pay a fake “federal student tax.” If the person does not comply, the scammer becomes aggressive and threatens to report the student to the police to be arrested. As schools around the nation prepare to re-open, it is important for taxpayers to be particularly aware of this scheme going after students and parents.
“Although variations of the IRS impersonation scam continue year-round, they tend to peak when scammers find prime opportunities to strike”, said IRS Commissioner John Koskinen. “As students and parents enter the new school year, they should remain alert to bogus calls, including those demanding fake tax payments from students.”
The IRS encourages college and school communities to share this information so that students, parents and their families are aware of these scams.
Scammers are constantly identifying new tactics to carry out their crimes in new and unsuspecting ways. This year, the IRS has seen scammers use a variety of schemes to fool taxpayers into paying money or giving up personal information. Some of these include:
Altering the caller ID on incoming phone calls in a “spoofing” attempt to make it seem like the IRS, the local police or another agency is calling
Imitating software providers to trick tax professionals--IR-2016-103
Demanding fake tax payments using iTunes gift cards--IR-2016-99
Soliciting W-2 information from payroll and human resources professionals--IR-2016-34
“Verifying” tax return information over the phone--IR-2016-40
Pretending to be from the tax preparation industry--IR-2016-28
If you receive an unexpected call from someone claiming to be from the IRS, here are some of the telltale signs to help protect yourself.
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