Today is the day that the IRS will begin to accept tax returns for this year’s tax filing season. Many financially strapped consumers who are looking for a fast payday, will go run to the nearest Tax business establishment that will promise big refunds and fast service”. According to the IRS, they have step up their safeguards to protect consumers who could possibly be victims of identity theft and tax refund fraud. The IRS has also established an Identity Protection Specialized Unit, here are 4 tips that can protect you from being a victim of identity theft.
1. Communication – IRS will never contact a tax payer about refund status , being audited through email. Any email communication requested you to send your personal information is a phishing scheme.
2. Social Media – Although the IRS uses social media, taxpayers will never be requested to send any personal tax information through any social media platform.
3. Phony Websites – Be careful with websites that may appear to be an Official IRS website. The only official IRS web address is www.irs.gov
4. Personal items- Keep track of any w-2’s you may get in the mail, be careful carrying items for example SSN cards, passports, or a drivers license. These items can be an easy gateway for identity thieves to do major harm.
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