If an email from the IRS shows up in your inbox promising to send you a new stimulus check — all you have to do is click on this link — the temptation to engage with that email will likely be irresistible for many people. That IRS scam email, however, should be avoided like plague, according to a warning from the Federal Trade Commission.

If you get a missive along these lines, you should know: The IRS does not initiate contact by email. Nor text messages or social media channels. The tax agency uses none of those methods to request personal or financial information. “Also,” the IRS warns, “watch out for emails with attachments or links claiming to have special information about Economic Impact Payments or refunds.”

Watch out for this IRS scam email

People’s desperation for a new stimulus payment, or even just information about how to get a new one, is what likely overrides the caution that would otherwise protect them from this danger. Nevertheless, the FTC’s warning states that the fake IRS email pretends that recipients can get a new stimulus check if you click on a link that lets you “access the form for your additional information” and “get help” with the application.

“But the link is a trick,” the FTC says. If you click it, a scammer might steal your money and your personal information to commit identity theft. It’s yet another version of the classic government impersonator scam.”

Alternatively, the IRS’ own website is…

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