Tax related identity theft has quickly become one of the most popular and profitable types of identity theft in America. This type of identity theft happens when a criminal uses your Social Security number to get a job or steals your tax refund.
Here are some signs that you may be a victim of Tax Related Identity Theft
- You receive W-2’s from employers you do not recognize.
- More than one tax return was filed in your name.
Some forms of identity theft are crimes of necessity, instigated by illegal aliens who do not have proper documentation to get a job. These criminals obtain employment using stolen IDs and social security numbers. As the employer files their annual taxes they report the identity thief’s income under the stolen social security number. The outcome; the owner of the stolen Social Security number inherits excess tax liability as well as monetary loss.
The most common form of Tax ID Theft is occurs when a criminal uses an unsuspecting consumers social security number to file a tax return before the consumer has a chance to do the same. The criminal then steals the refund out of the victims mailbox or has the refund directly deposited into their account.
Dealing With Tax-Related Identity Theft
If you believe that you may be a victim of Tax Related Identity Theft, fill out an IRS Identity Theft Affidavit (Form 14039) and contact the IRS immediately at the number listed below. IRS account specialists will help you to get your identity theft resolved, tax returns filed, and get you any refund you are due.
IRS Identity Protection Specialized Unit
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Identity theft happens. It’s an unfortunate fact of modern life. But there are certain steps you can take to help keep your personal information from falling into the wrong hands.
Here are five easy ways:
- Read your credit card and bank statements carefully and often.
- Know your payment due dates.
- If a bill doesn’t show up when you expect it, look into it.
- Read the statements from your health insurance plan.
- Make sure the claims paid match the care you got.
- Shred any documents with personal and financial information.
- Review each of your three credit reports at least once a year. It’s easy, and it’s free.
- Get your Free Credit Reports Here
Before you know it, protecting your personal information can be as routine as locking your doors at night.
Children are not supposed to have a credit report in their name, but new studies have found that the number of those who do is growing considerably, which can pose major problems for affected kids.
People under the age of 18 who have a credit report in their name are almost certainly the victims of identity theft, and this is a large and growing problem nationwide, according to a report from the Columbus Dispatch. Some studies have found that large amounts of kids have been a0ffected by identity theft, in which the crooks open large amounts of credit in their name and steal tens of thousands of dollars or more, and leave their young victims to carry the blame.
Often, this type of crime is carried out when a thief gains access to a kid’s Social Security number, the report said. Sometimes this can happen as a result of data breaches at hospitals or schools, and other times, their relatives may steal their identity. These youngsters are usually targeted because they will have no credit history and, since parents wouldn’t normally even think to make sure their son or daughter has a credit report in their name, the crime is unlikely to be discovered for a long time.
“These kids’ Social Security numbers are particularly valuable to thieves because they can go years without detection,” Bo Holland, chief executive of AllClearID, told the newspaper. “Because of privacy restrictions, the credit bureaus can’t share with parents what they find in their (child’s) files. So they don’t know who is using the Social number or what accounts were opened.”
The most common way a child who has been victimized by this type of crime discovers the problem is when they turn 18—sometimes even older—and apply for a line of credit, the report said. To their dismay, they may learn that they’re saddled with significant debts, such as those for auto loans, credit cards and sometimes even mortgages, that have gone long periods of time without payment.
One thing parents who are concerned about this type of crime can do is contact the credit reporting agencies and ask them to put a freeze on their kids’ credit until they turn 18 and are capable of obtaining some types of loans on their own.