IRS, State Police warn of potential tax return and Olympics-based scams

LANCASTER — Pennsylvania law enforcement agencies and the Internal Revenue Service are warning residents to be alert for potential scams involving fake refunds and other tax return-based scenarios, as well as other scams involving the Winter Olympic Games.

The IRS is warning of a specific scam in which a refund is placed in the victim’s actual bank account. Later, the victim receives notification of an overpayment, and that the victim needs to return some of the money.

State Police warn of several scams involving the Olympics, including:

  • A victim is offered payment to display Olympics materials in their vehicle
  • A lottery promotion where the “winner” gets a trip to the Games in South Korea
  • Counterfeit Olympics merchandise on sale


Residents should also be aware of other scams, including one that has been around for years: the Publishers Clearing House scam.

Recently, an elderly Lancaster County resident lost nearly $7,000 in such a scam. The victim was asked to pay taxes on the “prize,” and the victim sent cash.

In all these scams, it is very difficult to recuperate lost funds.

Contact your local police department and/or financial institution if you believe you were a victim of a scam.