Avoiding W2 scams during tax season

(WTNH) — Tax season is a prime time for hackers. Commissioner of the CT Department of Consumer Protection Michelle Seagull and VP of Professional Services at Kelser Corporation Matt Kozloski share their tips on ways to protect yourself.

What to look out for:
  • Tax season is a time when hackers and scammers are particularly active because personal information is being exchanged within companies and between employers and individuals
  • Common scams to watch for:
    • Imposter accountants and brokers asking you to email tax info
    • Friends or family asking for info via email or text that may be seen by hackers if your system is compromised
    • Co-workers or HR asking to email in info (it should be entered via a secure system)
  • Main takeaway–don’t email any tax info to anyone. Upload securely
How to protect yourself:
  • Patching (keeping software up to date) is important because people often don’t realize they have been hacked. Without up-to-date software, hackers could be watching as you enter tax info.
  • The school districts that were the victims of W-2 fraud last tax season made the news because they’re large organizations with recognizable names, but this also happens every day this time of year to small companies and individuals
  • Kelser works with companies to provide tools that double check all links in emails and make sure all sites visited are real
  • Cybersecurity training in the workplace is always a good idea, but particularly good during tax season
  • Policies for companies such as “we won’t ask you to email any tax info” are helpful

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