Around tax time each year we are reminded about how critical it is to be vigilant in protecting confidential personal information. As mentioned in a release from the IRS (see the link below), criminals are becoming more and more savvy in how they gather information and then use it to exploit taxpayers across the United States. Unfortunately, there are no exemptions when it comes to a potential target; we are all at risk. Federal and state agencies are attempting to generate more awareness around these scams, but they can only do so much. It makes the efforts of staying one step ahead nearly impossible.
As a reminder, the IRS would never request any sort of personal confidential information by email or by phone. A Legacy Trust employee recently received one of these threatening phone calls at home from someone claiming to work at the IRS. The caller demanded they divulge information and said that they would be subject to penalties and fines if they did not cooperate. None of this was valid and serves as a reminder that we all have a duty to protect ourselves and our most sensitive information.
Whenever you receive a request for personal information, whether it comes from the IRS, Legacy Trust or anyone else and you are suspicious, please practice caution before responding in any way. Valid communications will be mailed to your home address, not through email or a phone call. If you do receive something you feel is suspicious, please do not hesitate to contact us for assistance.