Tax Season is Here: Protect Yourself from Identity Theft
As the tax season approaches, we at ITConnexx encourage everyone to protect themselves from falling victim of “identity theft.” In 2015, in just our local area of Green Bay, there were a 146 reported cases of “identity theft” related to fraudulent tax returns. Thus far in 2016, the Green Bay Police Department reports 22 cases involving people that have attempted to file their returns but have learned that someone has stolen their identity and filed their taxes already. It is apparent, there is a spike in theft identity already this year. Our goal is educate you so the downward trend can begin.
There are various ways criminals obtain identities. To protect yourself:
- Remain vigilant of where you store and give out your personal information
- Use secure electronic networks (Never use public WiFi for Banking, Tax Filing, or Financial)
- Shred documents that people could use to get your identity (Never throw away mail that has personal information without shredding it)
If you become a victim of fraudulent tax returns, please contact your local police department. Often times, if someone has filed fraudulent tax returns, the suspects may have other identifiable information that may affect your credit.
Also, you must complete and submit the two forms from the Department of the Treasury-Internal Revenue Service. These forms will assist you in filing your real tax returns and assist the IRS criminal investigators. These forms are on the IRS website at https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f8821.pdf and https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f14039.pdf
Happy Tax Season!