Fraudsters are out once again to steal your money and this time they are banking on a new Coronavirus scam.
It has often been seen throughout history that criminals and fraudsters try to take every single opportunity to defraud unsuspecting and innocent victims especially when they are more vulnerable or are in a state of emergency such as now.
Recently it has been discovered that a new Coronavirus scam doing the rounds. Internal Revenue Service, aka IRS, in the US has warned people about the scam that is trying to take the undue advantage of Covid-19 outbreak.
The scammers who are involved in this have been observed to be demanding for PayPal, bank accounts or other financial information from potential victims. These hackers trick people by promising them the ‘much talked about’ stimulus check which is a part of the federal economic relief package announced by the American government.
All U.S. residents with an adjusted gross income up to $75,0000 ($150,000 for married residents) who are not dependent on another taxpayer and have an eligible Social Security number will be allowed to avail for a full rebate check.
As a part of the stimulus rebate, $1,200 will be receivable per adult, $2,400 if they are married. In addition to this, another $500 per child will be made available too.
The Internal Revenue Service aka the IRS has informed that they will be using a taxpayer’s 2019 tax return or a 2018 tax return for information to credit the stimulus amount via direct deposit or check. Therefore, there is no need for signing up or any other activity to be eligible to receive the amount of money.
The IRS has further mentioned that the rebate amount will be reduced by $5 for each $100 that a US resident taxpayer’s income exceeds the phase-out threshold. Also, in cases where the incomes exceed 99,000, $146,500 for the head of household filers with one child, and $198,000 for joint filers with no children, the amount will be completely phased-out.
Criminals Exploiting The Current State Of Uncertainty
In 2019, the FTC or Federal Trade Commission which is a United States federal regulatory agency with a mission to promote consumer protection and prevention of unfair or dishonest business activities revealed that people reported losing more than $667 million to imposters, who often pretended to be calling from the government or well-known business.
Every year when it’s the tax season in the U.S, scammers get busy in trying to scam people into giving them money by pretending they are calling from the IRS. This year the IRS is observing the same old seasonal rise in tax-related attacks however now it is coming wrapped up with a COVID-19 themed twist given the current state of affairs.
Chuck Rettig who is the current IRS Commissioner stated that Bonafide IRS agents never communicate with taxpayers in the way these scammers do and therefore everyone should be very careful when they receive calls or texts stating that it is from the IRS.
Don Fort who is the IRS Criminal Investigation Chief has urged everyone to stay vigilant because he believes that it is easier for criminals to exploit their victims in the light of the current state of uncertainty. He also mentioned that the IRS Criminal Investigation Division is working hard to shut down the operation of these scammers.