IRS refunded $4B to identity thieves

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( — November 7, 2013)  — WASHINGTON (AP) — A Treasury report says the Internal Revenue Service issued $4 billion in fraudulent tax refunds last year to people using stolen identities.


Many refunds were sent overseas, including 655 sent to a single address in Lithuania.  The report by the agency’s inspector general says the IRS has stepped up efforts to fight identity theft, but thieves are getting more aggressive.



Last year, the IRS stopped more than $12 billion in fraudulent refunds from going to identity thieves. That’s up from $8 billion the year before.


The report says thieves often steal Social Security numbers from people who don’t have to file tax returns, including people who are young, old or deceased.


In other cases, thieves use stolen Social Security numbers to file fraudulent tax returns before the legitimate taxpayer files.


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Most of us understand the dangers but how to go about stopping identity theft is another matter. Sure we can sign up with one of the credit monitoring companies that have sprung up over the last few years but what do they actually do for their monthly fee and are we supposed to just pay it for the rest of our lives?


Identity theft is something that can affect everyone.  Learn more about how you can stop yourself from becoming a victim of identity theft visiting this site to learn more.