Identity Theft and Tax Fraud

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There are many forms of identity theft that can deprive you of your tax refund, so you need to beware of them. One of the most common methods is where thieves use your Social Security number and other personal information to deceive the Internal Revenue Service into diverting your refund into their own pockets, according to a Scripps Howard News Service investigation.

The Scripps study of more than 1.4 million ID theft records from the agency’s Consumer Sentinel database revealed that the volume of tax- or wage-related identity theft complaints to the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) more than tripled from 2005 to 2009. On the other hand, there was a decline in the overall number of identity theft complaints to the federal watchdog agency. But it is not known if this is due to the number of identity thefts decreasing, or because most of the cases go unreported to the FTC.

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