Dec 16, 2020 03:07 AM EST
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) warned that if you received a text message promising a $1,200 stimulus check, it is a scam.
A coalition of state tax agencies and the tax industry and the IRS are warning Americans who received unsolicited messages regarding the $1,200 stimulus checks not to respond. That scam typically reads, "You have received a direct deposit of $1,200 from COVID-19 TREAS FUND. Further action is required to accept this payment into your account. Continue here to accept this payment."
The message with an accompanying link is a fake phishing URL, but it may appear to come from an authorized source like the state's agency, as per CNBC. The scam directs individuals to an imitated IRS website and will ask for their personal as well as financial information, such as bank account details.
The federal agency reminds people that it does not send such kinds of unsolicited emails or text messages. The government tax agency never asks for tax payments through gift cards and will not threaten people with lawsuits or jail.
IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig said in a statement that criminals are relentlessly using the COVID-19 pandemic and the stimulus payments as a cover to fool and trick taxpayers out of their identities or money. "This scam is a new twist on those we've been seeing much of this year," he added.
Rettig urges people to remain alert to any types of scams.
Meanwhile, the IRS encourages people to take screenshots if they received these kinds of text scams and email them to the agency at email@example.com. Do not forget to include the date and time you receive the message, the phone number that received the text, and the phone number from which it came.
At the beginning of November, the IRS first warned about scams, but it tweeted about it this month. The agency reminds people that it would never inform you through text or ask for confidential details such as a bank account to pay the stimulus check.
According to The Sun, the warning came as the deadline to claim the first stimulus payment on November 21.at the same time, struggling households are missing out on the second round of financial support, as it has not been included in the new $908 billion COVID-19 relief proposal.
Read also: Your Second Stimulus Check Might Be Smaller with These Situations
By remembering these tips The Sun gave, you could avoid getting caught in a stimulus check scam:
Read also: Money Matters: Signs You're Overspending This Holidays
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