Man: Someone Used My Name to Get a Job, Avoid Taxes
IRS says new twist to identity theft becoming more frequent.
A Green Brook resident said his social security information and name were used by someone in New York state to gain employment, according to police.
The resident said he received notices from the IRS advising him of income taxes totaling $5,108 for work performed in 2010 at College Park, N.Y.
The report follows one last week, in which a resident reported discovering his identity had been stolen and used in an attempt to obtain an income tax refund.
Acording to the IRS, such cases are becoming increasingly frequent, causing frustrations for taxpayers.
"We know identity theft is a frustrating process for victims," IRS Spokewoman Dianne Besunder said. "We take this issue very seriously and we continue to expand on our screening process in order to stop fraudulent returns and protect innocent taxpayers."
The IRS says the key to quickly resolving any issues regarding identity theft is to report it as soon as it becomes known. According to the agency's Identity Protection Tips page, thieves will often gain personal information using "phishing" techniques, sending an email or creating a website mimicking the IRS.
But the first tip is "The IRS does not initiate contact with taxpayers by email or social media tools to request personal or financial information," so any such communication can be ruled out as bogus.
Since many cases of identity theft stem from lost or stolen wallets, the IRS also recommends not carrying social security cards or documents with social security numbers.
The Green Brook resident reporting the identity theft this week was following the procedures recomended by the IRS when a person believes they are the victims of such crimes. With his police report filed, the IRS will launch its official investigation.
How successful is the IRS at locating and prosecuting the identity thieves? In recent years, the IRS has greatly increased its efforts at prosecutions, even posting a page listing some successful efforts.
"The IRS is utilizing the full capabilities and resources of our Criminal Investigation division to investigate those who would steal from American taxpayers through identity theft," Besunder said.
The Federal Trade Commission Identity Theft page offers information on ways to prevent being a victim, what to do if it happens and how to minimize the problems caused by identity theft.