SCAM ALERT: If you receive an unexpected refund check from the IRS, send it back!

Data pix.

A new twist on an old scam has already claimed hundreds of victims this tax season.

Scam artists steal your identity, file bogus taxes under your name, and when the refund check is sent to you in the mail or deposited into your account, the thieves go to work.

They are calling victims who receive such a refund, telling them that it was an IRS error and to send back the checks immediately - however, the victims are unknowingly  sending the refund checks to the criminals themselves, who are posing as IRS debt collectors.

"Now, that's not your money and if you don't actually return it to the IRS, you could get in trouble," tax lawyer Kelly Phillips Erb said.

Erb says the IRS just detected the scam at the beginning of February after several hundred complaints from taxpayers.

The IRS wants to remind everyone that agents will never call you, but you should call them at 1-800-829-1040 if someone impersonating the IRS dials your number.

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