Don’t Take the Bait, Step 6: Watch Out for the W-2 Email Scam

The following article was published by the IRS.

ShieldThe IRS, state tax agencies and the tax industry today urged tax professionals and businesses to beware of a recent increase in email scams targeting employee Forms W-2.

The W-2 scam – called a business email compromise or BEC – is one of the most dangerous phishing email schemes trending nationwide from a tax administration perspective. The IRS saw a sharp increase in the number of incidents and victims during the 2017 filing season.

Increasing awareness about business email compromises is part of the “Don’t Take the Bait” campaign, a 10-part series aimed at tax professionals. The IRS, state tax agencies and the tax industry, working together as the Security Summit, urge practitioners to learn to protect themselves and their clients from BEC scams. This is part of the ongoing Protect Your Clients; Protect Yourself effort. Continue reading

Posted in Accounting, Fraud, IRS, Personal Finance, Personal Taxes, Planning Strategies, Tax Tips | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Your Retirement Income: Why Diversification Matters

When investing for retirement, there are many things to think about in order to get it right. But there are five specific risks that must be addressed in order to preserve both your money and your standard of living as you begin to make withdrawals:

  • Longevity
  • Inflation
  • Withdrawal Rate
  • Market Volatility
  • Health Care

How can these risks be addressed? The answer is quite simple: diversify! Having a diversified income plan helps balance all these risks, helping to increase the odds your money will outlast you. Continue reading

Posted in IRA, Personal Finance, Planning Strategies, Retirement | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Eight Tips to Protect Taxpayers from Identity Theft

The following article was published by the IRS.

cyber securityIdentity theft happens when someone steals personal information for financial gain. Tax-related identity theft happens when someone uses another person’s stolen Social Security number (SSN) or Employer Identification Number (EIN) to file a tax return to obtain a fraudulent refund.

Many people first find out they are victims of identity theft when they submit their tax returns. That’s because the IRS lets them know someone else already used their SSN to file.

The IRS continues to work hard to stop identity theft with a strategy of prevention, detection and victim assistance. So far, the agency has stopped millions of dollars from getting into the hands of thieves.

Check out these eight tips on how to protect against identity theft: Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Saving Money Without Effort

Saving money is something we all aspire to do. But some do it much better than others. The key? Automation! Here are several time-tested ways to simplify your savings goals and stick with your plan. Continue reading

Posted in Personal Finance, Planning Strategies, YouTube | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

How Does the IRS Contact Taxpayers?

The following article was published by the IRS.

letterWhen the IRS needs to contact a taxpayer, the first contact is normally by letter delivered by the U.S. Postal Service. The IRS doesn’t normally initiate contact with taxpayers by email, nor does it send text messages or contact through social media channels.

Depending on the situation, IRS employees may first call or visit with a taxpayer. In some instances, advance notice is provided in writing via a letter or notice, but not always. Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized

What Are the Different Kinds of Life Insurance?

There are two basic types of life insurance: term life insurance and permanent life insurance. Which one is better? The answer depends on factors such as your goals and your situation in life. Here is a brief look at what separates the two different types:

Term Life Insurance – This type of insurance is temporary in nature. Rather than accruing value over time, it is a fixed death benefit that stays constant over the life of the term, but only for a long as the predetermined term you chose when you signed up. Continue reading

Posted in Personal Finance, Planning Strategies, YouTube | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Making the Most out of Miscellaneous Deductions

The following article was published by the IRS.

man at deskMiscellaneous deductions are tax breaks that generally don’t fit into a particular tax category. They can help reduce taxable income and the amount of taxes owed. For example, some employees can deduct certain work expenses like uniforms as miscellaneous deductions. To do that, they must itemize their deductions instead of taking the standard deduction on their tax return.

Here are several tips from the IRS about miscellaneous deductions: Continue reading

Posted in IRS, Personal Finance, Personal Taxes, Planning Strategies, Tax Deductions | Tagged , , , ,