Fraud targeting taxpayers is an ongoing nationwide problem. Tax ID theft occurs when personal information is stolen and used to file a fraudulent tax return. When attempting to file a tax return, victims are notified that the return has already been filed.
Follow these tips to help protect your tax return and refund from identity thieves:
- File early so that scammers have less time to access your information.
- If filing electronically, update your computer with antivirus protection and run anti-spyware software regularly.
- Do not leave tax returns on your computer. Once the return is filed, transfer the information to a flash drive or CD.
- Never click on links or attachments in emails from strangers.
Never provide your social security number or other personal information to anyone you do not know.
If you suspect tax related identity theft, call the Internal Revenue Service at 1-800-908-4490.