The “Dirty Dozen” is a list of common tax scams compiled by the IRS for more than 20 years to alert taxpayers and the tax professional community about tax scams and other fraudulent schemes. Designed to raise awareness among taxpayers and others who may not always be aware of developments involving tax administration, it includes potentially abusive arrangements that taxpayers should avoid. Let’s take a look at this year’s “Dirty Dozen” tax scams:
Tax-related identity theft occurs when someone uses a taxpayer’s stolen SSN to file a tax return claiming a fraudulent refund. In the vast majority of tax-related identity theft cases, the IRS identifies a suspicious tax return and pulls the suspicious return for review. The IRS then sends a letter to the taxpayer and won’t process the tax return until the taxpayer responds.
Tax-related identity theft occurs when someone uses a taxpayer’s stolen personal information, such as a Social Security number, to file a tax return claiming a false refund. Thieves are actively working to steal taxpayer information and identities, and everyone should do everything they can to prevent identity theft.
Starting December 13, 2020, the IRS began masking sensitive data on business tax transcripts. Previously, only sensitive data on individual tax transcripts was masked.
Taxpayers should be on the lookout for calls and email phishing attempts regarding the Coronavirus, or COVID-19 that could lead to tax-related fraud and identity theft. Because criminals take every opportunity to perpetrate a fraud on unsuspecting victims during times of need, taxpayers should also be skeptical about text messages received and websites and social media attempts to request money or personal information.
Tax-related ID theft occurs when someone uses a taxpayer’s stolen personal information to file a tax return claiming a fraudulent refund. Thieves then use personal information like a stolen Social Security number. While the accounting profession and IRS work hard to prevent identity theft, taxpayers also play an important role.
Due to ongoing efforts to protect taxpayers from identity thieves, the Internal Revenue Service no longer offers tax transcript faxing service and third-party mailing of tax returns and certain transcripts. These measures are effective June 28 and July 1, 2019, respectively, and affect individual and business transcripts.