FBI Tech Tuesday—Building a Digital Defense Against Tax Refund Fraud


March 13 2018

The IRS recently warned about a new scam in which a fraudster steals client data from a tax preparer, files a return, and then has the money deposited in the legitimate taxpayer’s real bank account. The fraudster then calls the taxpayer saying the refund was deposited in error and threatens to send the matter to a collection agency if the taxpayer doesn’t “return” the money by sending it to the fraudster.

In another version of this refund scam, the IRS warns that some people are getting calls accusing them of committing fraud. The taxpayer is threatened with criminal charges, an arrest warrant, and the “blacklisting” of his Social Security number if he doesn’t immediately return the refund. Of course, the scam artist ensures that the “return” ends up getting routed to his own bank account.