With tax season or tax refund season in full swing it is almost a guarantee that you will see an increase in tax related spam and scams. First, remember the IRS does not initiate taxpayer communications through email. So any email purporting to be from the IRS regarding specific taxpayer information is a scam.
Over the past day a spam message may have landed in your CU mailbox claiming to notify you of an available tax refund. Obviously this is a scam, not only did many of us receive this spam in our mailboxes we may also be receiving this spam from the CU_wellness list serve. Spam is spam regardless of the sender. The sender of an email is very easy to fabricate so it should not be relied upon to validate authenticity of an email. As always I recommend looking at the following indicators when authenticating an email:
- Is the from address logical? In this case why would CU_wellness be sending tax refund notifications, this is obviously spam and should be deleted.
- Is the salutation generic? In the case it is ‘Dear Taxpayer’, a good indicator of suspicious email.
- Are there links in the email that are pointing to websites that are not logical to the subject of the email?
- Is the email asking for private or personal information such as bank account, credit card, SSN, or passwords? This is an obvious indicator or spam.
- Is the formatting and language of the email professional, or is it hastily put together?
If you have questions about specific emails that appear suspicious you can send them (as an attachment) to firstname.lastname@example.org or call the Service Desk at 402-280-1111.