It is tax time again in the USA. And that is the time for fake emails that pretend to be from the IRS.
In its recent Tax Tip 2011-58, the IRS advised:
It pays to be choosy when it comes to disclosing personal information. Identity thieves have used stolen personal data to access financial accounts, run up charges on credit cards and apply for new loans. The IRS is aware of several identity theft scams involving taxes or scammers posing as the IRS itself. The IRS does not use e-mail to contact taxpayers about issues related to their accounts. If you have any doubt whether a contact from the IRS is authentic, call 800-829-1040 to confirm it.
How could I trust that Tax Tip 2011-58 was real? Maybe it is a fake warning and the phone number I am supposed to trust is really a criminal.
This is my inbox with Tax Tip 2011-58.
In this Outlook display, I see two elements that cannot be faked. These elements are the Check-lock icon that appears in the listview instead of the standard envelope and the icon that appears just above the message. I know this is really from the IRS.
You can know who really sent you email, too.
Know Who. No Doubt. Use eMail ID.