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Taxpayers warned about new e-mail scam

Taxpayers who receive an e-mail about being investigated by the Internal Revenue Service are encouraged to delete it immediately, as the message contains a link that, if activated, could allow someone remote access to the computer.

Taxpayers who receive an e-mail about being investigated by the Internal Revenue Service are encouraged to delete it immediately, as the message contains a link that, if activated, could allow someone remote access to the computer.

The e-mail just surfaced in the last few days, said Carrie Resch, an IRS spokeswoman.

According to the IRS, the e-mail falsely states that a criminal probe of the recipient is underway for submitting a false tax return to the California Franchise Board.

A link in the message lures people to open an attachment to find out more about the complaint but is actually a Trojan Horse, according to an IRS press release.

The IRS does not send out unsolicited e-mails, officials say, so anyone who receives a message claiming to be from the organization should forward the e-mails to phishing@irs.gov .

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The term "phishing" comes from other e-mails scams the IRS has seen that manipulate people into disclosing private information.

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