Phishing and other fake IRS emails

dirty dozen irs scam 2

Tax scammers are sending out so-called "phishing" emails that appear to be from the IRS and claim that the recipient either owes money or is due a refund.

Their goal: to get you to give up your address, Social Security, credit card, or bank account number or any other valuable information that lets them steal your identity or your money.

Do not bite.

"The IRS won't send you an email about a bill or refund out of the blue. Don't click on one claiming to be from the IRS that takes you by surprise," said IRS Commissioner John Koskinen in a statement.

Nor does it ask for personal or financial information by text, social media or email.

Related: Fake IRS phone calls top list of tax scams

If you get an unsolicited email that seems to be from the IRS or a related agency, such as the Electronic Federal Tax Payment System (EFTPS), don't reply, don't open attachments and don't click on links. Doing so can enable scammers to collect your personal information or infect your computer with malicious code.

Instead, report the phishing email by sending it to

First published March 6, 2015: 7:59 AM ET

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