Most victims of identity theft aren’t aware they are a victim until they file their tax returns. Tax-related identity theft is a serious matter and the IRS warns it can take up to 180 days to resolve.
There are signs you may be a victim. These include receiving a W2 from an employer you weren’t employed by, having a balance or refund for a year you didn’t file, or receiving a letter from the IRS stating a tax return has already been filed. Take action immediately if any of these happen to you.
1) Contact your local police department and file a report.
2) Call the IRS (800-908-4490) and report the theft.
3) Keep records of all calls and letters sent and received.
4) Order a copy of your credit report and put a fraud alert on your report.
Please note that the IRS will never email, use social media, or use text messaging to gather personal information or alert you of a possible fraud. Forward suspicious email messages to firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information about tax-related identity theft, visit www.stopfraud.gov or www.consumer.ft.gov.