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Attorney General DeWine Warns of Tax Scams


(COLUMBUS, Ohio) — Attorney General Mike DeWine today warned Ohioans to watch for e-mail messages and letters that claim to be from the Internal Revenue Service, but are actually scams designed to capture personal information.

"Scam artists know that this is tax season, and they are trying to confuse consumers who are preparing to file their taxes," Attorney General DeWine said. "The IRS will not communicate with you via e-mail to tell you about a problem with your taxes, and you should not click on links in any suspicious e-mail messages."

A Franklin County resident said he received an e-mail message that appeared to be from the Internal Revenue Service. The e-mail indicated that the consumer was late in submitting his W-2 form and instructed him to click on a link to send the updated form. Fortunately, the consumer recognized that the e-mail was a scam, and he did not click on the link nor provide any personal information.

Another consumer from Cuyahoga County reported receiving a phony 1099 form in an envelope marked "important tax return information." The bogus form stated that the consumer had won $61,000.

Consumers should watch for signs of a tax scam, including:

  • Messages from the "IRS" about a problem with your tax forms.
  • Requests for personal information, such as your Social Security number.
  • Forms or letters that indicate you have won a lottery or sweepstakes.
  • Instructions to click on links that may direct you to a third-party website.
  • Poor grammar or illogical statements.
  • Threats that you will not receive your tax refund if you fail to respond.

If you receive a suspicious e-mail claiming to come from the IRS, forward it to the IRS at Remember not to click on any links in the message.

Consumers also can report scams to the Ohio Attorney General's Office at or by calling 800-282-0515.

Media Contacts:

Eve Mueller: 614-728-5432
Lisa Hackley: 614-644-0508

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