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Advisory: The 2015 Tax Return Season is upon us: BEWARE of IRS Scams, Phishing, ID theft! Secure your W2 and related documents.
 

Residents of Washtenaw County are already reporting phone scams and identity thefts relating to their tax returns. Please review the information below provided by the IRS and Federal Trade Commission:

WASHINGTON — The Internal Revenue Service today warned consumers about a sophisticated phone scam targeting taxpayers, including recent immigrants, throughout the country.

Victims are told they owe money to the IRS and it must be paid promptly through a pre-loaded debit card or wire transfer. If the victim refuses to cooperate, they are then threatened with arrest, deportation or suspension of a business or driver’s license. In many cases, the caller becomes hostile and insulting.

Other characteristics of this scam include:

•Scammers use fake names and IRS badge numbers. They generally use common names and surnames to identify themselves.
•Scammers may be able to recite the last four digits of a victim’s Social Security Number.
•Scammers spoof the IRS toll-free number on caller ID to make it appear that it’s the IRS calling.
•Scammers sometimes send bogus IRS emails to some victims to support their bogus calls.
•Victims hear background noise of other calls being conducted to mimic a call site.
•After threatening victims with jail time or driver’s license revocation, scammers hang up and others soon call back pretending to be from the local police or DMV, and the caller ID supports their claim.
If you get a phone call from someone claiming to be from the IRS, here’s what you should do:

•If you know you owe taxes or you think you might owe taxes, call the IRS at 1.800.829.1040. The IRS employees at that line can help you with a payment issue – if there really is such an issue.
•If you know you don’t owe taxes or have no reason to think that you owe any taxes (for example, you’ve never received a bill or the caller made some bogus threats as described above), then call and report the incident to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration at 1.800.366.4484.
•You can file a complaint using the FTC Complaint Assistant; choose “Other” and then “Imposter Scams.” If the complaint involves someone impersonating the IRS, include the words “IRS Telephone Scam” in the notes.
Taxpayers should be aware that there are other unrelated scams (such as a lottery sweepstakes) and solicitations (such as debt relief) that fraudulently claim to be from the IRS.

The IRS encourages taxpayers to be vigilant against phone and email scams that use the IRS as a lure. The IRS does not initiate contact with taxpayers by email to request personal or financial information. This includes any type of electronic communication, such as text messages and social media channels. The IRS also does not ask for PINs, passwords or similar confidential access information for credit card, bank or other financial accounts. Recipients should not open any attachments or click on any links contained in the message. Instead, forward the e-mail to phishing@irs.gov.

The IRS and FTC request your assistance in reporting scams and phishing by using the following website:

javascript:LinkAlert('http://www.irs.gov/uac/Report-Phishing')

In addition, make sure that you secure your W2 and other tax related documents as they provide all the information needed by a criminal to file a tax return in your name and collect the return.

For full details, view this message on the web.


www.fbi.gov/scams-safety/fraud

For local details, view this message on the web.


At Chelsea State Bank, we understand you have many banking choices. Our customers choose us for a few simple reasons.

We value Your Money.  The staff at CSB truly appreciates that you trust us with what you work so hard to achieve. We treat every customer – and their every dollar – with the integrity that is deserved.

We support Your Community.  Our schools, our hospital, our basic need organizations, our arts community, our awareness groups: they feed our community with hope for a better tomorrow.  And CSB supports them every step of the way.

We are Your Bank.  We fully realize that without you, there is no bank. So, we’re here to serve you with a customer-first and a customer-only mentality that we know you will find is a welcomed retreat to what you might be used to at larger, out-of-state institutions.

So Keep it Local.  Chelsea State Bank is the keeper of your financial dreams.


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