Though it is a difficult time, that doesn’t mean the bad actors aren’t still active. Beware, the IRS has identified a new version of a phishing email scam targeting tax professionals.
The fake email tells you your EFIN has been put on a temporarily hold and warns it will be suspended unless you open an embedded document and confirm or deny a submitted Form 1040. The embedded “1040” document likely contains malware.
This is a good time to remember that all tax professionals are targets of cybercriminals seeking to steal client data or the practitioners’ identities. The fake emails are characterized by an urgent message (your EFIN will be suspended) and try to entice recipients to open a link or attachment. The IRS urges all tax professionals to be on alert and take security steps to protect their clients and their businesses. Review Publication 4557, Safeguarding Taxpayer Data, for how to be safer.
Some ways to protect your data:
- Using the multi-factor authentication option offered by tax software to protect accounts from unauthorized access.
- Use strong password protections on all devices.
- Never open suspicious emails, links and attachments may carry malware.
- Use strong security software and keep it updated.