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Thread: Today's Scam Alerts

  1. #1
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    Today's Scam Alerts

    Scammers Impersonate BGE

    Callers Falsely Claim Utilities Will be Shut Off if Payment is Not Made

    BALTIMORE (December 1, 2017) Maryland Attorney General Brian E. Frosh today warned consumers to be wary of telephone calls that appear to be from Baltimore Gas & Electric (BGE). The callers threaten to shut off power for non-payment unless the consumer sends money.

    "Scammers use threats and fear tactics to get you to hand over money and personal information," said Attorney General Frosh. "The best defense is to not answer the call, or just hang up!"

    BGE reports that scams and utility imposters are on the rise. Consumers are urged to verify the identity of BGE employees, and to take the following precautions:

    -- Hang up immediately

    -- Do not provide any personal information, credit card or bank account numbers, BGE account numbers or social security numbers

    -- Call BGE at 800-685-0123 to report a possible scam

    BGE representatives will never call you to ask for cash payment or personal information. If you have concerns about the status of your account, call BGE's Customer Service line at 1-800-685-0123.

    If you believe you are the target of a phone scam, you may report the incident to the Office of Attorney General at 410-528-8662, or report suspicious activity to your local police.

  2. #2
    somd.com Editor Editor's Avatar
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    Thieves Are Using W-2 Scam to Get Employee Data, Tax Information

    ANNAPOLIS (December 1, 2017) - The IRS is warning business, payroll and human resource communities about a growing W-2 email scam by which criminals are gaining access to W-2s and other sensitive tax information that employers have about their employees.

    During National Tax Security Awareness Week this week, the IRS has been partnering with state tax agencies including the Maryland Comptroller's Office and tax industry stakeholders to remind people about the importance of data protection.

    W-2 scams put workers at risk for tax-related identity theft. The IRS recommends that all employers educate employees about this scheme, especially those in human resources and payroll departments. These employees are usually the first targets.

    Here are five warning signs about the scam:

    -- The thief poses as a company executive, school official or other leader in the organization.

    -- Scam emails often start with a simple greeting. It can be something like, "Hey, you in today?"

    -- The crook sends an email to an employee with payroll access and requests a list of all employees and their Forms W-2. The thief may even specify the format in which they want the information.

    -- Thieves use many different subject lines and use words like "review," "manual review" or "request." In some cases, the thief may send a follow up email asking for a wire transfer.

    -- Because payroll officials believe they are corresponding with an executive, it may take weeks for someone to realize a data theft occurred. Criminals usually try to use the information quickly, sometimes filing fraudulent tax returns within a day or two.

    This scam is such a threat that a special IRS reporting process has been set up. If you think you were a victim of this scam, visit IRS.gov to find out how to report it.

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