Security & Identity | Phishing Attacks

Be on Alert for Phishing Scams During Tax Season

Tax season is in full swing and cybercriminals are ramping up efforts to scam unsuspecting individuals and organizations – with more than 2.4 million US taxpayers already targeted by IRS impersonators, suffering losses totaling $72.8 million. Confusion mixed with a sense of urgency to file taxes on time creates a breeding ground for successful phishing attacks for citizens, which include mail, phone, and email attempts. 

What is Phishing?

Phishing is a type of social engineering attack used to steal user data. In these types of scams, an attacker often poses as a legitimate institution, commonly via email, designed to trick the user into revealing sensitive information. 

 

IRS phishing and impersonation attempts have increased 60% in recent years, being referenced as “the largest, most pervasive impersonation scam in the history of the IRS” by the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration. Such scams are designed to look like legitimate communications but are used to install malware and steal sensitive information. 

Use these 5 tips to educate your organization on how to prevent an attack:
  • Train your employees on how to identify fraudulent emails. 
  • Limit who has access to sensitive data, such as W2s. 
  • Mandate Multi-factor authentication for all outbound, sensitive data requests. 
  • Make sure your data loss prevention policies are configured in your email security system. 
  • Flag emails outside your network as external. 

For more information on phishing and tax season cyber scams, schedule a call with a Forsyte security expert to learn how Guardian 365 can help protect, detect, and remediate threats to your organization.  

 

Additional resources and sites to review for more information on staying safe this tax season:  

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