I.R.S. dirty dozen tax scams

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By Andrew Michalscheck By Andrew Michalscheck

PHOENIX -- The Internal Revenue Service just released its top tax scams of the year, and here are some of them.

Topping the list of tax scams is identity theft, where crooks attempt to use your social security number to file taxes and claim your refund. It's a growing problem, but the I.R.S. said it has increased its staff devoted to weeding out these scammers.

Here's another one, the I.R.S. says beware of phishing, where you get unsolicited e-mails requesting your personal information and the request looks like it came from the I.R.S. Don't fall for it though. 

Consumers need to be aware of tax preparer fraud too. There are unscrupulous preparers out there. The I.R.S. says consumers should only use preparers who sign the returns and who enter their I.R.S. preparer’s tax ID number.

And finally, be aware of so called "free money" from the I.R.S. and Social Security.  Scammers prey on churches, the elderly and those with low income.  Unsuspecting victims are lured with the promise of non-existent funds or rebates that simply doesn’t exist.

Click here for a complete list of what the IRS calls the dirty dozen tax scams.