With tax season just around the corner, the Cheyenne Police Department is warning taxpayers to be on the lookout for scammers trying to cash in.

Officer Kevin Malatesta says one of the most common schemes is one in which a scammer steals a taxpayer's identity and files a fraudulent tax return so the scammer can collect a refund check.

"A lot of times with this particular scam they buy up this information in bulk," said Malatesta. "They file these tax returns as quickly as they can, that way they get in before whoever is actually going to be filing their tax return has an opportunity to get their W-2 and get anything done."

"The people they general target are the lower income folks because they get that Earned Income Credit," Malatesta added.

To combat this type of scam, Malatesta says the Internal Revenue Service is delaying refunds until February 15.

He says anyone who has fallen victim to tax-related identity theft should file a report with the Federal Trade Commission at www.identitytheft.gov and follow up with the IRS.

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