Tax-related identity theft occurs when someone uses your stolen Social Security number (SSN) to file a tax return claiming a fraudulent refund.
You may not even know this has happened until you file your return and discover that a return already has been filed using your SSN. Or, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) may send you a letter saying they have identified a suspicious return using your SSN.
Remember that the IRS does not initiate contact with taxpayers by email, text or social media to request personal or financial information.
If you think you are a victim, file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission at www.identitytheft.gov.
(Note* Due to government shutdown, federal government offices may be closed)