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Pa. Attorney General Warns Against Tax Season Scams

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) -- With tax day just a couple weeks away, state Attorney General Josh Shapiro says scam artists are on the increase in Pennsylvania.

He's urging taxpayers to take special precautions to protect their identity.

With the deadline for state and federal tax returns just around the corner, Shapiro says tax scams are on the rise across the state.

"It's tax season right now and we're seeing an uptick in the number of scammers out there who are particularly focused on people who are in the process of filing their taxes," Shapiro said.

Shapiro says scam artists are using a variety of techniques to steal your identity and attempt to claim your tax refund.

"These scams come in many different ways around tax time," he said. "Sometimes people try to steal your identity to get your refund. Sometimes they try to get your personal information so they can drain your bank account. Whatever it is, it's a scam, and we're here to protect you."

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The IRS says there's no easy way for the taxpayer to know in advance if someone has stolen their ID within the tax system until after the filing. If someone has stolen your ID, the IRS generally freezes the account upon the second filing until things are worked out.

The Attorney General says taxpayers need to know that the IRS never emails, texts or telephones taxpayers.

"If that happens to you, I want you to hang up and call me. Call the Office of Attorney General," Shapiro said.

Shapiro says taxpayers, in particular, need to stay alert.

"If it looks too good to be true or it looks a little confusing, it is too good to be true and it is confusing. It's a scam, and we want people to call our office when that occurs," he said.

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