Another rapidly growing form of tax fraud involves the filing of fraudulent Federal or State tax returns after stealing a Taxpayer’s identity. This normally occurs early in the tax filing season, when most Taxpayers haven’t yet filed their tax returns. It can take months to resolve tax fraud cases and fully correct the damage caused by these fraudulent tax filings.
One form of tax fraud that is becoming more widespread involves Taxpayers receiving unexpected telephone calls or emails from someone posing as a tax authority agent (IRS or State), and threatening severe legal action for outstanding unpaid taxes, unless the Taxpayer makes an immediate payment.
Neither the IRS nor State tax authorities will telephone or email Taxpayers threatening such aggressive legal actions. If you have a tax problem, you will always be contacted by First Class Mail or Certified Mail.
● Do not routinely carry your Social Security card or other documents displaying your SSN. When you must carry these documents, never leave them unattended.
● Only share your SSN when you initiate the contact, or when you are certain the request is legitimate.
● Regularly monitor activity on your bank and credit card accounts. Check your credit report at least annually.
● Protect your personal computer by using a firewall and anti-virus software. Secure your mobile devices with a strong password.
● Shred any unneeded documents that contain personal or financial information, before you dispose of them.
● If you receive any written notifications via the United States Postal Service from either the IRS or your State tax authority,
notify EQUIS immediately.
● If you receive any telephone calls from supposed tax authority agents, do not provide any information whatsoever. Hang up your phone, and notify EQUIS immediately.
● If you receive any emails from supposed tax authority agents, do not open the email. Delete the email, and notify EQUIS immediately.