Got Income Tax Refund message? Beware! It might be a trap
If you have received any message related to Income Tax Refund, asking you to click on a link to provide some information, then be alert!
If you have received any message related to Income Tax Refund, asking you to click on a link to provide some information, then be alert! Clicking on such a link may make you lose a lot of money to fraudsters. On many occasions, taxpayers end up paying more to the Income Tax department than what they are required to. The tax department returns this excess money in the form of Income Tax Return (ITR) refund. Fraudsters try to take advantage of this process by sending fake messages to taxpayers in a bid to dupe them of their money. In recent times, several people have complained of receiving e-mails from ids appearing similar to the Income Tax department. Many have also received fake ITR messages sent by fraudsters.
The income tax department also warns customers against such messages and emails from time to time. Even last year, the country's top cybersecurity agency – CERT-In – had cautioned against ‘SMShing’ fraud where fake messages were being sent to people in the name of the Income Tax Department. The messages used to tell customers that their refunds had been approved but they needed to provide some information by clicking on a link.
CERT-in had said that once a person clicked on the SMShing (made of SMS and phishing) link, he/she ran the risk of either his/her personal details being “put up for sale on the dark web” (clandestine web), or even their IT department records “altered” by misusing their e-filing credentials, PTI had reported.
How to avoid the trap
You should remember that the income tax department never asks for the bank or personal information through mail or message. The department already possesses all such information. And the refund is transferred to your account automatically after the processing is over.
You should never respond to a suspected mail or message. You should never share them as well. In case, you get such a mail or message then forward it to firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com