Oklahomans Should Be Cautious Of After Tax Day Scammers

Wednesday, April 16th 2014, 7:23 pm
By: News On 6

Timing is everything, and right after Tax Day is prime time for several new and aggressive tax scams.

If you didn't drop your tax return in the mail before Tuesday's deadline, you could be vulnerable to scammers contacting you and saying you need to pay up or face penalties. But most of those calls or emails are scams.

Consumer Affairs CEO, Zac Carman said, "If you have a gut feeling something's not right, something's not right."

Consumer Affairs COO Eric Jenkins' received an interesting email in his inbox on Wednesday morning.

"First glance I thought, ‘oh wow, tax season, maybe this is something I should look at,'" Jenkins said.

The day after Tax Day, the email from a .gov address seemed right, but it's actually a scam. The full address is .gov.co.uk, not from the U.S. government, and attached is a zip file, likely packed with hacking software.

It's a mild scam compared to one that is aggressive in calling people who didn't file their taxes.

"Saying, 'Hey, you owe us money. We're sending police to your home. You're about to be deported. You're about to be arrested.' You know, these scams happen every year around tax season," Carman said.

These scammers demand $4,000 to $6,000 immediately to offset unpaid taxes.

"Scammers are like scavengers. They prey on the sick animals and the people that are wounded and at their most vulnerable," said Carman.

The IRS is warning about another scam. This one looks like an email from the IRS, saying your taxes have a "document processing error." Actually, it's scammers trying to get your social security number.

"The design of the email, the artwork, everything. They're stealing companies' logos and, you know, copying logos and putting them in there," Jenkins said.

Carman said, "It's all around these big government events, like tax season."

An IRS spokesperson said the IRS will only contact you the old fashioned way, through the mail.

Consumer experts advise to just pause and think twice before responding to a tax-related call or email.