By April, everyone in Georgia and throughout America will be required to file their federal income tax return. Those who are considered to be employees of a company will receive a form W-2 and were supposed to get them by Jan. 31. The IRS is warning payroll departments that a scam could attempt to collect employee information through by way of phishing. In 2017, the targets were largely for-profit companies.
However, in 2018, the range of targets has expanded to include nonprofit entities and school districts. In many cases, an individual will receive an email asking for information regarding those who may have received a W-2. This information may include home addresses, phone numbers and earnings figures from the past year. Scammers may also ask for the social security numbers (SSNs) of those who work for the company.
In 2017, the IRS says that over 200 employers were tricked into handing over such information. This resulted in hundreds of thousands of employees who may have had their information handed over to scammers. The IRS has established an email address that employers can use to report any loss of W-2 data or any attempts to obtain such data. Anyone who believes that their information may have been compromised may file a report with the FTC.
If a fraudulent tax return is filed with the IRS, it could result in penalties being levied against the party that committed the fraud. If a taxpayer believes that he or she has been a tax fraud victim, that person may benefit by contacting the IRS directly. It may also be worthwhile to contact an attorney. This may reduce the odds that an individual’s information or assets are at risk because of actions taken by someone possibly acting in a criminal manner.