CT Department of Revenue Services & IRS
Warn of Tax Preparer Targeted Scam
Connecticut Department of Revenue Services (DRS) Commissioner Kevin Sullivan joined the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) in issuing a warning that scammers may try to prey on tax preparers. Tax preparers need to be alert to a new phishing email scam impersonating software providers.
Said DRS Commissioner Kevin Sullivan, "We’ve seen continuing activity in these scams throughout the filing season. As the tax deadline nears, these criminals may try and trick tax professionals to get at personally identifiable taxpayer information and refunds via email or by phone. People should remain vigilant."
The scam email comes with the subject line, “Access Locked.” It tells recipients that access to their tax prep software accounts has been “suspended due to errors in your security details.” The scam email asks the tax professional to address the issue by using an “unlock” link provided in the email.
However, the link will take the tax professional to a fake web page where they are asked to enter their user name and password. Instead of unlocking accounts, the tax professionals actually are inadvertently providing their information to cybercriminals who use the stolen credentials to access the preparers’ accounts to steal client information.
The Security Summit partners, which includes the IRS, state tax agencies and the nation’s tax community, remind tax professionals and taxpayers to never open a link or an attachment from a suspicious email. These scams can increase during the tax season.
For tax professionals who receive emails purportedly from their tax software providers suggesting their accounts have been suspended, they should send those scam emails to their tax software provider. For Windows users, please use this process to help the investigation of these scam emails:
Use “Save As” to save the scam. Under “save as type” in the drop down menu, select “plain text” and save to your desk top. Do not click on any links.
Open a new email and attach this saved email as a file
Send your new email containing the attachment your tax software provider, as well as copy Phishing@IRS.gov.
As part of the effort to protect taxpayers, the IRS has teamed up with state revenue departments and the tax industry to make sure taxpayers understand the dangers to their personal and financial data as part of the “Taxes. Security. Together” campaign.