Current Tax Scams to be Aware of in 2024

tax scams

Tax scams are increasingly sophisticated in 2024, with scammers continually evolving their tactics to deceive taxpayers and tax professionals. Here are some of the most prevalent tax scams this year to be cautious of:

  1. Phishing and Smishing: Fraudsters send emails or text messages that appear to be from the IRS, asking recipients to click on a link or provide personal information to claim a refund or resolve an issue. These messages often contain malicious links that can steal personal data or install malware on devices​ (​​ (CPA Practice Advisor)​.
  2. AI-Driven Scams: With the rise of AI tools, scammers are creating more convincing fake emails and websites that closely mimic legitimate ones. These AI-driven scams can be harder to detect due to fewer grammatical and design errors​ (McAfee)​.
  3. IRS Impersonation Phone Scams: Scammers posing as IRS agents call taxpayers, claiming they owe money and must pay immediately using specific methods such as gift cards or wire transfers. They often use threats of arrest, deportation, or license suspension to pressure victims into compliance​ (​.
  4. Fake Employee Retention Credit Claims: Scammers contact businesses, falsely claiming they are eligible for the Employee Retention Credit and offering to file claims on their behalf for a fee. However, many businesses do not qualify for this credit, leading to fraudulent claims​ (CPA Practice Advisor)​.
  5. Assistance in Setting Up Online Accounts: Fraudsters offer to help taxpayers set up their IRS online accounts, requiring them to share personal information such as Social Security numbers, which can then be used for identity theft​ (CPA Practice Advisor)​.
  6. W-2 Phishing Scams: These scams target payroll and HR professionals by requesting W-2 forms under the guise of legitimate business requests. Scammers use this information to file fraudulent tax returns and steal refunds​ (​.
  7. New Client Scams Targeting Tax Professionals: Cybercriminals pose as potential clients seeking tax preparation services. They send emails with links or attachments that, when opened, install malware to steal sensitive information or compromise the tax professional’s system​ (GovDelivery)​.
  8. Fake Charities: In the wake of natural disasters or other crises, scammers set up fake charities to solicit donations. They pressure donors to give immediately, often using emotional appeals, and then pocket the money​ (CPA Practice Advisor)​.
  9. Ghost Preparers: These unscrupulous tax preparers charge fees for their services, file incorrect returns, and then disappear without signing the returns, leaving taxpayers to deal with the fallout from fraudulent filings​ (CPA Practice Advisor)​.

To protect yourself, be wary about unsolicited communications claiming to be from the IRS, do not click on suspicious links, and never share personal information over the phone or email. Always verify with your tax professional or charity before engaging with them. If you suspect you’ve encountered a scam, report it to the IRS and other relevant authorities​.

(​​ (​​ (GovDelivery)​​ (CPA Practice Advisor)​.


Wright Ford Young & Co. is headquartered in Irvine, CA and is the largest single office CPA firm in Orange County. WFY is a full service corporate accounting firm offering audit, tax, estate and trust, and business consulting services to closely held company and family business owners. More information about our Firm can be found at