Email scammers are taking advantage of tax time to swindle Australians, the tax office warns.

Several official-looking "phishing" emails are circulating which offer recipients a tax refund if they fill out an online form.

The form is designed to steal personal information including tax file numbers, passwords, and credit card information.

Clicking the link can also infect computers with malicious software, known as "malware", which can monitor browsing and steal personal information.

The emails claim to come from official-sounding senders like the "Tax Refund Department" or "Tax Refund E-Portal", according to the warning on the government's SCAMwatch website.

They may send users to phony websites that look extremely convincing and may even completely mirror the genuine ATO site.

"The ATO will never email asking you to confirm, update or disclose confidential details," the warning says.

People should delete emails offering refunds, it says.

 

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