IRS Launches New Tax Fraud Protection Program
According to the Internal Revenue Service, all taxpayers who filed federal returns last year from Georgia, Florida or the District of Columbia are eligible for an Identity Protection PIN (IP PIN) that will help protect them from tax-related identity theft.
“Stopping identity theft and refund fraud is a top priority for the Internal Revenue Service, said IRS Spokesman Mark Green. For the 2015 filing season, the IRS continues to expand these efforts to better protect taxpayers and help victims.”
Green says it’s part of an IRS pilot program begun last year.
“The pilot project is part of broader IRS efforts to combat tax-related identity theft,” he said. “The IRS has an aggressive, multi-part strategy of prevention, detection and victim assistance. Georgia, Florida and the District of Columbia were chosen for the pilot because they have higher levels of tax-related identity theft.”
Green said once a taxpayer opts into the PIN program, they will remain in the program forever – there is no way to opt out.
“Every year, a new IP PIN will be mailed to the taxpayer before the filing season, and that current IP PIN must then be used on the tax return before the IRS will accept that return for processing,” he said.
Green noted that one reason the IRS instituted the PIN protection program was to help safeguard many identity theft victims who felt they had no way to protect themselves.
According to Green, it is easy to opt in to the PIN protection program.
“To opt into the program taxpayers who qualify should visit www.irs.gov/getanippin, to register and create an account,” Green said. “Taxpayers must also verify their identity as part of the process. You can get an IP Pin immediately even if you plan to file later in the year.”
According to the IRS, you don’t have to have been a victim of Identity Theft to opt in to the PIN protection program.