Late last week, the Internal Revenue Service learned of a new tax scam on the Internet that lures taxpayers into filing tax information on a site masquerading as a member of the Free File Alliance.The IRS reminded taxpayers the only place to access the Free File program is through the official IRS Web site, at

The IRS said that the latest twist on a scam involves tax prep Web sites that inaccurately claim to be part of the Free File Alliance, a partnership between 19 tax software companies and the agency. The IRS is working with the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration to investigate allegations that the Web sites accepted tax information from taxpayers, changed the taxpayers’ bank account numbers to their own and then filed the return through a legitimate Free File partner.

 The IRS stressed that Free File is a secure way for taxpayers to compete their returns. To qualify for Free File, taxpayers need to have an adjusted gross income of $52,000 or less -- a requirement that 95 million out of the 136 million taxpayers meet.

The only way to access the Free File program is through the IRS's Web site, After clicking "2007 Free File" on the home page, visitors should then click, "Start Now."  Taxpayers can use the "Guide Me to a Company" wizard to help decide which software to choose using criteria such as the state they live in, their estimated adjusted gross income and their age.

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