Beware of tax return scam

By Dana Griffin

dgriffin@abc6.com

@danagriffinABC6

PROVIDENCE, R I- This year, the Rhode Island Attorney General’s office is seeing a significant increase in complaints from people who’ve gone in to file their tax returns only to find out somebody already filed in their name.

“This appears to not be related to any friends or family. These are true identity thefts. They’re so sophisticated outfits. They may be operating over seas. We don’t know,” said Rhode Island Attorney General’s office spokesperson, Amy Kepme.

The spike may be due to major data breaches over the last couple of years.

Kempe said, “A scam artist or an identity thief may have gotten your social security number say from the Target data breach even thought that information wasn’t released.”

Many people are calling their local AG offices unsure of where to turn next. But it’s the IRS who you should be calling.

Also notify police and set up a credit alert.

This is a federal matter and it’s not easy catching scammers.

“There’s so much information on the internet about people and it’s so easy to get. So, you need to be vigilant, you need to be checking your credit through one of the three credit rating agencies. You need to be monitoring your bank account. You need to be monitoring things such as your tax returns” said Kempe.

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