The IRS website contains useful information on how to avoid becoming a victim of identity theft, plus steps to take if you do become a victim.
Here are the warning signs that you may have had your identity stolen:
The IRS notifies you that more than one tax return was filed using your social security number.
You’re notified that you owe additional tax or you’ve had collection actions taken against you for a year you did not file a tax return.
IRS records indicate you received wages from an employer unknown to you.
If you become a victim, the IRS recommends that you take the following steps:
File a police report.
File a complaint with the FTC.
Contact one of the three credit bureaus to place a fraud alert on your account.
Close any financial accounts opened without your permission.
Respond immediately to any IRS notice, according to the instructions given.
Complete IRS Form 14039 “Identity Theft Affidavit.”
Continue to pay your taxes and file your tax return, even if by paper.