ID thieves swiping tax return funds -, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

ID thieves swiping tax return funds

SYLVESTER (WALB) - Its tax return time and police are warning you to watch out for identity thieves.

Sylvester Police know of nine people have been victimized by scam artists who stole their ID's then got their refunds through a popular tax preparation website.

It's a credible website where you can file your taxes the quick and easy way. But crooks have turned to Turbo Tax with other people's information making off with thousands of dollars.

"Right now we're looking at about $30,000," said Sylvester Police Investigator Kenneth Washington.

He says the victims learned their identities had been stolen when they filed their taxes and learned their refund had already been issued.

"Their information is flagged by their Social Security number by the IRS and they've been advised by the people doing their taxes that a tax return has already been field in their name."

Washington contacted Turbo Tax and the IRS - meanwhile those whose refunds fell into the wrong hands aren't necessarily out of luck, but must follow certain steps to get their money back.

"First of all you must come to the Sylvester Police Department if it happened here and file a report. Also, there is an affidavit that you turn in to the IRS along with your identification," said Washington.

There's likely more than one person behind this ID theft operation. Albany, Ashburn and Tifton have received similar reports.. The only way to avoid becoming a victim is be careful who you give your private info to.

"Don't leave your private info with anyone. Be careful about giving your information out especially your SSN or birth date to anyone. Make sure it's a legitimate business and that you are protected," said Washington.



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