Just about all of us either have had some form of our identity stolen or know a victim. Perhaps the worst form is tax identity theft, when
someone steals your Social
Security number (SSN) and files a return claiming your refund. It's becoming so prevalent that the IRS has a
process for clearing it up and getting the refund you deserve. The 2015 tax filing season opened January 19 so file early to get ahead of thieves.
According to the IRS Taxpayer Guide to Identity Theft , follow
Step 1 - Report your stolen SSN.
File a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) at
www.ftccomplaintassistant.gov . You will receive a FTC
Identity Theft Affidavit. If the
identity theft is rampant, you also need to file a police report. If so, go to your local police department.
Contact one of the three credit bureaus to place a fraud alert on your account:
1. www.Equifax.com (1-888-766-0008)
2. www.Experian.com (1-888-397-3742)
3. www.TransUnion.com (1-800-680-7289)
You only need to contact one of these companies. They are required to let the other two know. A
fraud alert is free and will not hurt your credit score.