The IT department has alerted tax-payers against sharing personal financial information like PAN card number and credit cards details on the internet in the wake of a spurt in fake e-mails being sent to people. Concerned over fictitious and unauthorised e-mails landing in personal internet addresses of many people, the department has issued an “alert message”.
The technical and systems wing of the department is also adding a word of “caution” at the end of each mail sent under its name. “A number of taxpayers have received e-mails with subjects like ‘tax refund’ and ‘seeking refunds’ prompting us to take such measures. Such messages continue to land in big numbers in individual e-mails,” a senior official of the department said.
“Information has been received from several quarters that people are receiving electronic mails informing them of their income tax refunds and seeking their credit card details. “It is clarified that the department does not send e-mails regarding refunds and does not seek any information regarding credit cards of taxpayers.
Taxpayers are therefore cautioned that they should not respond to such mails and if they do so it would be at their risk and responsibility,” the department’s “alert” message said. These are some of the e-mail IDs which have been found to be fake. Unauthorised e-mail addresses could be more than the reported ones and hence taxpayers should avoid them. The IT department mail is only to be read to keep oneself updated but not to be replied to, the official said.
“Income Tax department does not send e-mails regarding refunds and does not seek any taxpayer information like user name, password, details of ATM, bank accounts, credit cards, etc. Taxpayers are advised not to part with such information on the basis of e-mails,” the department has said at the end of its e-mails.
In case of genuine IT e-mails, they have been appended with a note saying “this is a computer generated mail and calls for no signature,” the official said. The department has also advised tax-payers to keep their user ID and password secure, not share them with any other entity and suggested that the password be changed periodically when checking tax credit statements online.