Tax Identity Theft Quiz

What is tax identity theft?

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The IRS defines tax identity theft as anytime someone uses a stolen Social Security number and/or Tax Identification number so that they can file fraudulent tax returns to receive refunds.

True or False? Taxpayers who wait longer to file their taxes are more likely to fall victim to tax identity theft.

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Criminals prey on individuals who wait to file their taxes so that fraudulent returns remain undetected for longer.

Which one is NOT a common warning sign of tax identity theft?

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Tax identity theft warning signs will typically show up on your returns or IRS records. If you haven't received your W-2 forms, contact your employer(s) directly.

The IRS noted that the number of filed identity theft affidavits _________ this year by more than _____%.

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Thanks to the IRS's continued efforts to combat tax fraud and identity theft, the number of filed identity theft affidavits significantly dropped from 512,278 in 2015 to 237,750 in 2016.

Which is NOT true regarding the Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes (PATH) Act?

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The PATH Act was passed on Dec. 18, 2015 and has two main provisions:
1. Employers must file W-2 forms to the Social Security Administration by Jan. 31.
2. The IRS can withhold refunds from taxpayers who claim the Earned Income and/or Additional Child tax credits until Feb. 15.
These deadlines give the IRS more time to review returns thoroughly to improve its detection of fraudulent returns. It also allows the IRS to send refunds back to taxpayers more efficiently.

True or False? There is a decreased chance of becoming a victim of tax identity theft if you've also been a victim of a data breach.

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Criminals often use compromised information from data breaches to aid in committing tax fraud or tax identity theft. You may also be subjected to phishing emails and scam calls to obtain more valuable data (birth date, Social Security number, address, etc.) if the breached information was not enough to file fraudulent returns.

There were ______ confirmed tax identity theft returns caught by the IRS before they could enter its systems.

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The IRS stopped 787,000 confirmed tax identity theft returns this year, preventing more than $4 billion in potential losses.

True or False? The IRS will never call or email you to request an immediate payment.

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The IRS will NEVER ask you to make a payment via email or phone. If you receive a call from someone requesting you to make an immediate payment, hang up immediately and report the call to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).

What percent of taxpayers last year indicated that they would wait until the April 15 deadline to pay their taxes?

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According to a survey conducted by CyberScout, 21 percent of taxpayers said that they would wait until the last minute to file their taxes.

True or False? You cannot contact one of the three credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax, TransUnion) directly. You would need your financial institution/financial advisor to contact them for you.

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You can contact any one of the three main credit bureaus through their websites or phone numbers at anytime. You do not need your financial institution or advisor to contact them on your behalf.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of EZShield Inc. alone and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of any other person or entity, including specifically any person or entity affiliated with the distribution or display of this content.

Laura Bruck, VP Marketing at EZShield Fraud Protection
Laura Bruck joined EZShield in February of 2009, leading their marketing efforts and working with sales...
Read more about Laura Bruck.

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