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Tax Identity Theft Awareness

Tax Identity Theft Awareness

Now that the holiday season is over a new season begins- tax season. Whether you are ready or not tax identity thieves and IRS imposters are. We want to educate you on what tax identity theft is how IRS Imposters target you, as well as give you tips to start fighting tax identity theft right away. 

What is tax identity theft and IRS Imposters? The FTC defines them as the following; tax identity theft happens when someone uses your Social Security number (SSN) to file a phony tax return and collect your refund. You may not find out about it until you try to file your tax return and the IRS rejects it as a duplicate filing. While the IRS investigates, your tax refund can be delayed. The misuse of your SSN means you also may be at risk of other types of identity theft.

IRS imposters are scammers who pretend they’re calling from the IRS. They claim you owe taxes and demand that you pay right now, usually with a gift card or prepaid debit card. They threaten you’ll be arrested or face other bad consequences if you don’t pay. However, it’s all a lie. If you send the money, it’s gone.

To start fighting tax identity theft right away, remember:

  • Protect your SSN throughout the year. Do not give it out unless there is a good reason and you are sure whom you are giving it to.
  • File your tax return as early in the tax season as you can.
  • Use a secure internet connection if you file electronically, or mail your tax return directly from the post office.
  • Research a tax preparer thoroughly before you hand over personal information.
  • Check your credit report at least once a year. Make sure no one has opened a new account in your name.
  • Shred all sensitive documents

 

Protecting your identity is our priority; rest assured that our identity protection services are comprehensive and adaptive to changing times.  If you want more identity theft information or think you might be a victim of identity theft please visit our Online Security Center

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If tax identity theft happens to you, visit IdentityTheft.gov to report tax identity theft to the IRS and the FTC and get a personal recovery plan. IdentityTheft.gov helps you complete and file an IRS Identity Theft Affidavit (Form 14039) online as your first step to recovery.

 

 Information gathered from Consumer.ftc.gov

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