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IRS Warns Against an IRS/FBI Ransomware Phishing Attack

IRS Warns Against an IRS/FBI Ransomware Phishing Attack


By: Andrew Erk

IRS Warns Against an IRS/FBI Ransomware Phishing Attack

Your BBB was made aware of a large phishing scam that is taking place across the United States. Scammers are using the logos of both the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) and Internal Revenue Service (IRS) in an email ransomware scheme. The email contains the linked word ‘here’, which downloads a fake FBI questionnaire that installs a form of ransomware on your computer. This gives the scammers access to all your data. To recover your sensitive information and make sure nobody has access to it, you will be asked to pay a fine.

“The scam email uses the emblems of both the IRS and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. It tries to entice users to select a “here” link to download a fake FBI questionnaire,” the IRS said. “Instead, the link downloads a certain type of malware called ransomware that prevents users from accessing data stored on their device unless they pay money to the scammers.

This is a new twist on an old scheme,” said IRS Commissioner John Koskinen. “People should stay vigilant against email scams that try to impersonate the IRS and other agencies that try to lure you into clicking a link or opening an attachment. People with a tax issue won’t get their first contact from the IRS with a threatening email or phone call.”

If you receive one of these emails, promptly delete the email from your inbox and ignore all threats. Most importantly, don’t pay the ransom fee. Scammers will not give back information they stole even after receiving payment.

If you have received one of these emails, forward the email to, and file a report on

And remember, always use caution before clicking on links.

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Andrew Erk is our Trade Practice Assistant. He writes about business trends and consumer news and is also our social media, graphic design and digital guru.