The IRS 'dirty dozen' tax scams


The Internal Revenue Service has released its 2008 list of the 12 scammiest tax scams, with internet phishing and frivolous tax arguments topping the list. The IRS puts this list together each year to keep consumers aware of the latest and greatest tax scams -- and to help them avoid being taken in by them.

The key to avoiding IRS scams is no different than any other scam consumers may encounter: If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. There are a lot of claims about mysterious free money and magical tax refunds you never knew about. Well, they're simply not true.

Here are the top scams the IRS has identified this year and how you can spot them:

1. Phishing – You get an email that tells you that information is needed from you to in order to process your refund or clarify a tax problem. You click on the link and provide all kinds of personal information that helps criminals empty your bank account or get credit in your name. Never respond to an email that purports to be from the IRS and never use a link in an email to provide private information.