Identity theft victims being scammed by emails and web sites posing to be the IRS is increasing at an alarming rate. Many victims fall into the trap of answering emails which they think is from the IRS releasing confidential information such as social security numbers and other personal information. These scammers sometimes file a fraudulent return under the victims name and have a refund sent the imposter. The taxpayer becomes aware of this when they try to e-file their legitimate tax return and is rejected by the IRS.
To avoid this trap, do not reply to an email that poses as the IRS. The IRS never sends emails out to taxpayers regarding refunds, audits or requests for information. The IRS has set up an identity theft hotline at 800-9018-4490