While many businesses are struggling during the COVID pandemic, the scamming and hacking business seems to have grown. The IRS and its Security Summit partners are warning
people about a new text message scam using the $1200 Economic Impact Payment Program to trick people into revealing bank account information.
How the Scam Works
Scammers send a text message saying they have “received a direct deposit of $1,200 from COVID-19 TREAS FUND. Further action is required to accept this payment… Continue here to accept this payment …" The text includes a link to a phishing web address.
This fake link appears to come from a state agency or relief organization. It takes people to a fake website that looks like the IRS.gov Get My Payment website. If people visit the fake website and enter their personal and financial account information, the scammers collect it.
If You Receive this Text Message
Take a screenshot of the text
Email the screen shot and the following information to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Date/time/time zone that they received the text message
The phone number that received the text message
REMEMBER: The IRS doesn’t send unsolicited texts or emails.
The agency will never demand immediate payment using a gift card, prepaid debit card or wire transfer or threaten to have a taxpayer arrested.