How is the IRS protecting taxpayers from Identity Theft?

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As we prepare for the quickly approaching 2016 tax season, the IRS continues to prepare and strengthen protections against identity theft and fraud. The project began earlier this year and joined forces with the states, leaders of private sector tax firms, and several national tax related organizations. The collaborative effort, called the Security Summit, has identified more than 20 data elements and variables on tax return submissions that will help the IRS and state departments detects and prevent identity theft related filings. Some elements to protect against fraud include:

– Reviewing the transmission of the tax return, including the improper and/or repetitive use of Internet Protocol numbers, the Internet ‘address’ from which the return is originating.

– Reviewing computer device identification data tied to the return’s origin.

– Reviewing the time it takes to complete a tax return, so computer mechanized fraud can be detected.

– Capturing metadata in the computer transaction that will allow review for identity theft related fraud.

As always, the IRS continues to warn consumers to guard against scam phone calls from thieves intent on stealing their money or their identity. Criminals pose as the IRS to trick taxpayers out of money or personal information. The IRS will not call you to demand immediate payment. Click here for several tips on how to guard against tax related scam artists.