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Shannon Vavra Apr 6, 2017
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Tax scammers' $5.8 billion heist

Christopher Schirner via Flickr CC

One-third of Americans file their taxes after April 1st, according to IBM X-Force research, and scammers are taking advantage of the high traffic in tax-filing season to steal W-2 forms. From just December to February there was a 6000% rise in "tax-related spam emails" sent to Americans.

Why it matters: To put that in context, in 2016 the IRS paid out about $5.8 billion in fraudulent tax returns. Tips for protecting your sensitive information include filing early and signing up for a pin from the IRS. Remember, the IRS won't email for personal information in tax return forms.