Income Tax refund messages? IT department warns people over phishing scamhttps://indianexpress.com/article/technology/tech-news-technology/fake-income-tax-refund-messages-it-department-warns-people-over-phishing-scam-5493162/

Income Tax refund messages? IT department warns people over phishing scam

The Income Tax department of India has warned people about a new phishing scam being shared via SMS, which promises a refund for tax returns

fake income tax refund, income tax refund, income tax refund message, fake income tax refund sms, income tax refund sms, income tax refund fake sms, itr refund, itr refund fake sms, itr refund fake message, itr refund fake message news
Fake Income Tax refund messages: IT department warns over latest phishing scam, which claims to offer a refund of Rs 34,251 via a text message.

The Income Tax department of India has warned people about a new phishing scam being shared via SMS, which promises a refund for tax returns. The income tax department has also sent out emails to all registered users, warning them to beware of such false messages.

The message, which some users have also shared on Twitter, is sent via SMS and claims to offer IT refund to the user for Rs 34,251, which is a fairly high amount. The message also includes a link, which opens up to a special page, where the user is asked to enter their credit/debit card details in order to complete tax refund details.

In a Twitter post, the IT department’s official handle wrote, “Beware of fake refund messages claiming to be from the Income Tax Deptt. Please do not click on any link asking for bank details, Debit card/ CVV numbers. Don’t fall prey to phishing!”

Users should note that in case any refund is due to them, the IT department will not send a link for the same. Also entering debit card or credit card information on sites, sent via SMS link should be avoided because this could be a phishing scam to steal card information.

Advertising

In case of the income tax fraud message, it appears that the problem has become really serious.  Twitter user Karthik Srinivasan, who has the handle @beastoftraal on Twitter had shared a sample of what one of the messages looks like.

The message claim to be for a refund amount of Rs 34,251, and says that the Income Tax department requires one to click the link below in order to submit a formal request for remittance of this refund amount, which is unclaimed. It also includes a bitly link.

Based on his Twitter thread, the bitly link appears to have been created by a Russian domain on December 11, and has already seen close to 4000 clicks from India alone. Another user has responded to the thread and showed what the fake website looks like when one does click on the link.

Check out the tweets below

Based on the replies to the tweet, it looks like the message has also been sent to other users with a similar amount being offered as refund.

With the Income Tax department issuing an official warning, users should keep be careful about any message claiming to offer refund either via email or SMS. Any link from an unverified website should not be opened.

If you have been tricked into giving up information of your credit card or debit card to any such website, which claimed to be from the Income Tax department, it is best to immediately contact your bank and get the card blocked.