The IRS and FBI have been warning business owners about W2 scams for years. Most of these scams come in the form of suspicious emails or phone calls. Learn about the most common W2 phishing and W2 fraud scams and how to avoid them in the following article. Don’t let fraudsters get the best of your business.
Phone Scams – How Common are They?
Phone scams are the most common during the tax season. Typically the fraudster will pose as an IRS agent and ask for W2 information and/or social security numbers. You can find a list of common scams on the website for the IRS. During these phone scams, the fraudulent individual may threaten to revoke your business license or place you under arrest if you don’t give them what they are asking for. To most, this is obviously fake, but still, thousands of people fall for this scam every single year.
It is important to know that the IRS will never call you and ask for this kind of information. They will also never make threats against you. All initial correspondence with the IRS will be sent through postal mail. If you receive one of these phone scams, contact the IRS and give the phone number of the scammer.
Phishing – What Is It?
Phishing is basically the email version of a phone scam. These emails almost always have misspelled words, read as if a non-native English speaker wrote them, and other blatant errors. Not all phishing scams are obvious though. They can come in the form of professionally written professional emails that appear to come from someone in your company asking for employee information. Since this is the most common scam, it is always important to reach out to the company and ensure it is a legit request. Chances are it isn’t.
American businesses lose more than $500 million every year to these phishing scams. Don’t be one of the statistics.
Tips on How to Avoid W2 Scams
If you feel suspicious about a phone call or email, it is always best to not give out your information. Always, always verify with your company when it comes to email requests. Do not click on any email that appears suspicious. Be alert and vigilant and use common sense, especially during tax season.