Tax Tip: Watch Out For Fake IRS Sites

The IRS issued an official warning to consumers to watch out for fake IRS sites. The only official IRS website is IRS.gov. Any sites ending with .com, .net, or any other common extension are not official IRS sites.

Also, the IRS.gov site does have interactive features, but it asks for very little personal information. From IRS.gov:

Although the IRS Web site offers interactive features, the tax or private financial information that these features ask the taxpayer for is extremely limited. The IRS reminds consumers who access unfamiliar sites, or sites they have never dealt with before, that they should never reveal any personal or financial information, such as credit, bank account or PIN numbers, without verifying the validity of the site.

The IRS also reminds consumers to be alert to an on-going Internet scam in which consumers receive an e-mail informing them of a federal tax refund. The e-mail, which claims to be from the IRS, directs the consumer to a link — often a Web site resembling the IRS Web site — that requests personal and financial information, such as Social Security number and credit card information.

Remember: IRS.gov! Don’t follow links in emails. —MEGHANN MARCO

IRS Urges Caution about Internet Sites that Resemble the Official IRS Site [IRS.gov]

Comments

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  1. How do they not own irs.com? It seems like an obvious measure to capture that domain and forward it to the right place.

  2. Aeroracere says:

    What about IRS.GOV.NET? Is that one ok?

  3. mopar_man says:

    href=”#c1102585″>Aeroracere:

    The only official IRS website is IRS.gov, as stated above.

  4. myrall says:

    A little off topic, but this reminds me of the time my boss asked me to go to the White House’s website to look up visa information. She was standing over directly over my shoulder when I typed in whitehouse dot com. If she hadn’t been a tough ol’ New Yawk broad, she might’ve fainted. That taught me to start putting .gov for all gov’t websites…

  5. Reno_NV says:

    And for you college kids, look out for fake FAFSA (Financial Application for Federal Student Aid) sites as well. Make damn sure you give out your information to the real site. The fake sites look too real, too convincing, so be careful.

  6. Mr_Human says:

    Yeah, I don’t undertand why the IRS just doesn’t buy up those other domains; God knows, they have the money. I mean, even USPS.com goes to the post office.

  7. Athenor says:

    Um… probably because as far as I know, eminent domain doesn’t apply online, and thus the government has no ability to just take a website that is bought and paid for. Who knows, IRS could stand for a lot of things besides “Internal Revenue Service.”

    Basically, unless the gov’t catches a moment when these guys don’t renew their DNS contracts, the gov’t can’t do anything.

  8. Mr_Human says:

    Um . . .what I meant was why don’t they buy the names from their owners (assuming they can come to an agreement).

  9. Athenor says:

    *shrug* If the price was right, I’m sure squatters would sell. However, that price is probably very high, especially given all the .com/.net/.org/.us/.xxx et all, as well as misspellings.

    And I personally don’t want my tax money going to that. =/

  10. Marce says:

    @Reno_NV:

    On top of the likes of FAFSA.com being “fake” sites that claim they’ll get the application to the school faster, they charge $50-80 for a free application (Free Application for Federal Student Aid, anyone?). The real site is fafsa.ed.gov–file free, and don’t let them delay the application. A lot of good aid is first-come, first-served.

  11. rlee says:

    Um, did anyone notice the disclaimer at the bottom of the irs.com main page? Small, but still perfectly readable:

    “This site is in no way affiliated with the U.S. Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service bureau and is privately owned and operated.”