EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — Government entities are warning parents to be on the lookout for scams claiming to be related to the Child Tax Credit.
The FBI El Paso Division and the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation Division have noted that scammers are duping tax payers using traditional scam techniques.
“You’re going to see unsolicited phone calls, you’re going to see text messages with links, you’re going to see social media ads, you might even have emails sending you to spoofed government websites,” say Jeanette Harper, Public Affairs Officer at the FBI El Paso Division, tells KTSM 9 News.
The FBI says that government agencies will not contact you via these methods, and that most family’s monthly child tax credit payments are distributed through direct deposit without parents having to go through any additional processes.
“No one can help you enroll in this program,” says Harper. “The information for your enrollment is based on your 2019 and 2020 tax returns — so no one should be reaching out to you,” she adds.”
The goal of the scams are to trick people into sharing personally identifiable information so that the scammer can either drain their bank accounts or take out lines of credit in the victim’s name.
“They’re trying to get your social security number, they’re trying to get your financial banking information, your full name, date of birth, and that sort of stuff,” says Harper.
Harper says the FBI is trying to be proactive when it comes to warning taxpayers about the scams and that little data is currently available regarding the frequency of these scams or the amount of money lost.
To report a scam, click here.