Hoosiers are facing challenging times to keep their families safe and avoid the spread of COVID-19, and unfortunately scammers are adding additional risk by taking advantage of the current health crisis. Newly-surfaced reports show scammers creating text messages, emails, websites and social media posts to pose as government entities and organizations to obtain financial information from individuals for personal gain.
The Indiana Department of Revenue (DOR) team continues to find ways to assist Hoosiers, which includes helping individuals identify scams to avoid falling victim.
Here are a few key signs of these scams:
• Emphasizes the terms “Stimulus Check” or “Stimulus Payment.” The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) uses the official term “economic impact payment.”
• Asks the individual to sign over their stimulus check.
• Asks by phone, email, text or social media for verification of personal and/or banking information to receive or speed up their stimulus check.
• Mails the individual a fake check and requests the individual to call a number or verify information online to cash it.
DOR recommends Hoosiers remain vigilant and work hard to identify these scam attempts. Never engage with potential scammers online or on the phone.
Individuals who receive emails, text messages or social media attempts to gather information that appears to be from DOR, the IRS or an organization closely linked to either government agency, such as the Electronic Federal Tax Payment System (EFTPS), should forward it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Learn more about reporting suspected scams by going to the Report Phishing and Online Scams page on the IRS website.
Individuals can find official IRS information about the COVID-19 pandemic and economic impact payments on the IRS Coronavirus Tax Relief web page. For information on COVID-19 related changes to DOR operations and ongoing taxpayer relief, visit DOR’s Coronavirus webpage at dor.in.gov/7870.htm.