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Watch Out For The W-2 Scam As Tax Season Approaches

Last updated on Thursday, February 1, 2018

(UNDATED) - The Internal Revenue Service is warning businesses again about an email scam that uses a corporate officer’s name to request employee Forms W-2 from company payroll or human resources departments.

The W-2 scam first appeared in 2016, however, it is not expected to slow down during the 2018 tax season. Cybercriminals trick payroll and human resource officials into disclosing employee names, Social Security Numbers and income information by disguising themselves as a company executive. The fraudulent email can go as far as including the spoofed executive's actual email signature block to increase legitimacy. The thieves then attempt to file fraudulent tax returns for tax refunds or commit identity theft.

The IRS urges companies to report W-2 scam emails to the agency. If you or someone you know have become a victim of this scam, please report it. For more information, visit the IRS website, http://www.irs.gov, and search for "Form W-2/SSN Data Theft: Information for Businesses and Payroll Service Providers."

The following are details the email may contain:

How to guard against this scam:

Source: Internal Revenue Service (IRS)

To report a scam, go to the BBB Scam Tracker. To find trustworthy businesses, go to bbb.org.

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