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IRS Warns Of 400% Flood In Phishing and Malware This Tax Year Alone (networkworld.com) 42

coondoggie writes: There has been a 400% surge in phishing and malware incidents in this tax season alone, the Internal Revenue Service warned this week. According to the IRS, there have been thousands of phony emails aimed at fooling taxpayers into thinking these are official communications from the IRS or others in the tax industry, including from many tax software companies.
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IRS Warns Of 400% Flood In Phishing and Malware This Tax Year Alone

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  • Easy fix. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward
    A flat tax, where anyone could file their taxes on a postcard size form, would pretty much do away with this problem.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      Low income people are going to have a riot over that suggestion, just like they're practically rioting over the "smart" electric meters because they snitch when you steal power. I have family in Detroit... you know, lower class. Everyone there uses the tried and true method of I have no W2s or 1099s, so I just put down $500 in the "other income" section and check "head of household" and suddenly you qualify for a several thousand dollar rebate, earned income credit, etc. The Michigan Dept of Treasury finall

    • Calculating the tax is pretty near the easiest thing about doing your taxes.....you look up the number in the tax table and if you do it wrong, the IRS will correct it for you.
      The difficult part is figuring out what counts as income, and where to report that income.
  • by edibobb ( 113989 ) on Thursday February 18, 2016 @03:14PM (#51536359) Homepage
    I wonder what brought that on.
    https://www.washingtonpost.com... [washingtonpost.com]
    • Plays into this too...

      http://krebsonsecurity.com/2015/03/sign-up-at-irs-gov-before-crooks-do-it-for-you/

      Someone thought it would be a bright idea to have online registration with the IRS. So now people will think it's more legit if they did sign up. So that email could have more of a chance to be taken seriously...

    • Got my first from the 'IRS' a week ago, so I have seen an increase. Email address was in the UK which in hindsight probably would be an improvement:) Filled it in with gibberish and profanities and when I submitted it they complained that I was not excepting cookies.
  • my cousin Vinnie took care of it.
  • Someone should teach the IRS never to use variation percentages outside the -50% – +100% range.

    And unsurprisingly, they got it wrong: “1,026 up from 254 from a year earlier”, that makes roughly ×4, i.e. +300%; +400% is ×5.

    Well, it could just be just the journalist that sucks at maths. At the very least, he did not check the figures.

  • ... to fall for a scam like this?

    The IRS does not and would not *EVER* request any information that is confidential between you and the IRS to be sent via email.

    I'm not sure that the IRS even uses email to contact taxpayers at all, although if they did, it would probably be for things that are irrelevant to the matter of filing taxes, like maybe informing them of new services or something similar.

    • by dlt074 ( 548126 )

      you'd also think they would NEVER be the enforcer of health care law either... but they are.

      the only way to win, is eliminate the IRS.

    • ... to fall for a scam like this?

      The IRS does not and would not *EVER* request any information that is confidential between you and the IRS to be sent via email.

      I bet many people don't completely understand the nuances in distinction between transacting official communications over email, and calculating/filing your taxes on a website/electronically. If you can expect to get in swift and certain trouble for impersonating a police officer, wouldn't you assume that the IRS/FBI can similarly prosecute people who impersonate a government agency via electronic communications?

      On another note, why couldn't they have put investigative/prosecutory powers like that into so

  • The current system was set up to control behavior, not raise revenue. That's why we don't think of tax enforcement at the federal level as the banal process it should be, as we do with local taxes. No one fears their county tax assessor like they fear a visit from the IRS because state and local tax laws are almost black and white compared to the federal income tax. If the local tax man visits you, you should have known better because 4th grade level math is the max you need to calculate your property tax b

  • What was the breakdown in terms of desktop Operating Systems in relation to these phishing and malware attacks?

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