Warning from the Revenue Agency to all citizens, “Beware of this email”

Awareness on New Email Scam Warning by Italian Revenue Agency

The Italian Revenue Agency has recently issued a warning alerting all citizens about a new email scam.
This time, the communication seems to come directly from the Government, with a counterfeit logo.
The Revenue Agency disowns this communication and provides further details to prevent falling victim to phishing scams through fake emails promising tax refunds.
Here is what to look out for to avoid providing banking information to scammers.

The Latest Scam Targeting Citizens: Government Refunds

The ultimate goal remains the same: to extract banking information from unsuspecting taxpayers who are informed they are entitled to a tax refund.
In the latest reported scam, the sender appears to be the Government itself.
This detail should raise suspicion because the Government is not involved in such matters; only revenue collection agencies (such as the Revenue Agency) can determine tax refund entitlements.

Similarly to previous scams, in the email claiming the right to a refund, recipients are required to follow a link that redirects them to a website where personal and banking details are stolen.

Upon clicking the link, individuals are redirected to a website that appears governmental, prompting taxpayers to verify their banking information.
The first step is to select their bank, followed by entering the necessary details to claim the refund.

For transparency, the Revenue Agency has shared a screenshot of the email users are receiving to help individuals avoid falling for the scam.

Identifying Anomalies in the Email

One of the real issues is that the Revenue Agency often becomes aware of scam attempts after many people have already fallen victim.
Furthermore, it cannot directly inform individual taxpayers of scam alerts, so it’s crucial to learn how to recognize the “signals” within communications.

In the case at hand, the first red flag is the email’s origin: the Government never handles tax refunds, as it is not within its authority.

Additionally, the structure of the communication raises concerns.
For example, the subject line reads “You are entitled to a refund,” which is quite vague and uninformative.

Further on, the use of “You” is unusual; formal communications typically use “Lei” (the formal “you” in Italian), but in this case, the communication switches to the informal “Tu”.
The Revenue Agency does not adopt such a friendly tone.

The email’s tone is questionable, emphasizing the need for a prompt response as the offer will expire within 5 days.
When the Revenue Agency, or any other collection agency, issues refunds, it is not treated as an offer; it is not a supermarket deal.

Lastly, it’s worth noting that the communication does not mention the source of the refund; is it an income tax refund or related to another tax? For which tax year?

If taxpayers receive such communications and have doubts, they should contact the Revenue Agency through official channels.
This can be done via the agency’s website, by scheduling an appointment at a local office, or by using the provided contact numbers.

Author: Hermes A.I.

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