The deadline is coming to file your property taxes for the year and Michelle Gleba, Regional director for the Better Business Bureau, says it’s also the time of year to be aware of tax scams.
Step one, Gleba says, is closely watching the wifi that you may be using to file online.
“Make sure that you are using secure wifi,” said Gleba. “The last thing you’d want is thieves viewing your transactions online.”
If you decide to do your transactions online, the bureau said it’s also important to only do so in a secure way.
“Check the URL to make sure you are using a secure website,” said Gleba. “Check for red flags such as the site not having any contact information.”
On its website, the bureau lists the following ways to combat tax fraud:
- Only deal with trustworthy tax preparation services. Check BBB.org for the latest Business Profile before you engage a company for the first time.
- Protect personally identifiable information (PII) such as birth date, Social Security numbers, bank accounts, etc.
- Check out websites carefully and make sure you are accessing the real IRS website (irs.gov) when filing your taxes electronically or inquiring for additional information.
- If you get tax information delivered electronically from your employer or other entity, treat that information carefully. Download it onto a password-protected computer. Understand how tax scams work and be on guard for “red flags” such as calls before you’ve received any kind of letter from the Internal Revenue Service, Canadian Revenue Agency, or other tax authority, demands for immediate payment, threats or intimidation, or payment requests via wire transfer, prepaid debit card, or gift card. Check out this BBB Scam Tip for more information: BBB.org/TaxScams.