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May 21, 2008

David Barnes
(202) 622-3062

TIGTA's 2008 IRS Tax Forums Presentation to Focus on Phishing

Investigators from the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) will discuss the impact of phishing schemes on the tax professional community at the 2008 IRS Nationwide Tax Forums, TIGTA's Inspector General J. Russell George announced today.

Phishing is a deceptive practice by which an unsolicited e-mail directs unsuspecting victims to a fraudulent Web site that requests financial information such as credit card or bank account numbers, or other sensitive financial information.

"Each year, TIGTA's presentations at the IRS's Tax Forums discuss the latest investigative trends that impact both tax professionals and the taxpayers they serve," said Deputy Inspector General for Investigations Steven Jones. "The online phishing scam epidemic is growing exponentially. In 2007, an average of two host Web sites surfaced each day. That number has risen to eight per day this year," he said.

TIGTA's presentation, "Phishing- Don't Get Hooked!" will provide examples of authentic and fraudulent emails and Web sites to see if the audience can identify the difference. It will also include advice on what tax professionals should do if they or their clients receive a suspicious or questionable IRS-related email.

The presentations will be held at 2:35 p.m. on the first day of each forum and at 8 a.m. on the second day of each forum.

TIGTA special agents will also be available to speak with forum attendees at TIGTA's exhibit booth.

The 2008 Tax Forums will be held at the following locations and dates:

  • Atlanta: July 1 - July 3
  • Chicago: July 22 - July 24
  • Orlando: August 5 - August 7
  • Las Vegas: August 19 - August 21
  • New York: August 26 - August 28
  • San Diego: September 9 -September 11.

To report an IRS-related phishing incident call the TIGTA Hotline at 1-800-366-4484.