Each year, over a million tax-paying citizens have had identity thieves steal their tax refunds. Unfortunately, this number is growing. If fact, the number of identity theft cases that were tax related was reported in to have increased since 2008 by 650%.Visit my latest blog posted at http://www.1031xchanges.com/5-smart-ways-to-use-your-tax-refund/
Fortunately, the Internal Revenue Service labels refund fraud through identity theft as a top priority. To combat the problem, additional resources have been dedicated to deal with the increasing problem. But, there are also precautions the tax payer can take as an effort to avoid this type of theft.
Are you tired of getting paltry tax refund checks year in and year out? Or, do you owe Uncle Sam every year? Have you heard in the news every other day that some rich senator, young tech media mogul, large corporation or oil billionaire paid little to no taxes? There is a way to get complex tax issues distilled into easy to understand strategies you can quickly and easily use, so you can get a bigger tax refund.
How are identity thieves accomplishing identity theft through tax refunds? Typically speaking, the thief will obtain a victim’s information. Then this thief will file a false tax return, using the victim’s name. They will load the refund onto a prepaid debit card and then vanish with the funds. In order to avoid this, ensure that your computer’s malware and antivirus software protection is up to date. Along with this, be certain that your online tax preparation software URL begins with “https” rather than “http”. A secure connection is indicated by the ‘s’.
Another popular method for stealing identities is for a thief to act as a legitimate, tax preparing professional, or as a company which assists people in settling back taxes. This is generally done through virtual “storefronts” on the Internet. But, rather that helping a person, the thief will make off with personal information or a taxpayer’s refund. In many situations and times, tax professionals are greatly advisable, especially when a person needs support with tax relief. Just be certain that you are using a reputable company when seeking assistance.
When tax time begins, be safe with mail that has sensitive information. Shred it before throwing it away, and be sure you do not throw away papers with sensitive information on it or important warnings. Should you be notified of a tax return you did not file, contact the IRS immediately. Also, remember that the IRS does not contact people through email or via social networks, so be wary of notices received on these sites that claim to be with the IRS. One last advisable step is to order your free annual credit report to be sure that no one has attempted to open a new account using your name.
Knowing the common methods thieves use helps you to protect yourself (and your tax refund). The goal here is getting your refund before the thieves do. Experts agree that filing early is the number one safeguard. Although it may be too late to follow this advice this year, keep it in mind for the next. For more information visit this website today.