Schaffner, Knight, Minnaugh & Company, P.C.

Worried about identity theft?

Jun 17, 2015 | Posted in News and Events

You may have read or heard about the recent breach of taxpayer information at the IRS. This breach affected approximately 104,000 taxpayers whose name, address, Social Security number and other private information was used on the IRS’ “Get Transcript” page to access prior year federal tax returns. Thieves unsuccessfully attempted to gain information from another 100,000 returns.

If you are a client of Schaffner, Knight, Minnaugh & Company, P.C., be assured, we DID NOT use the Get Transcript program to prepare your return. However, like your credit card companies, the IRS will notify you if they suspect your personal information was compromised. The IRS will provide a year of free credit monitoring for taxpayers whose information was compromised. They will also notify you if your return was among those the thieves attempted to access. The IRS notifies you by regular mail, and does NOT ask you for confidential information or money for this service, but some scammers posing as the IRS do. If you have any doubts or worries, please forward any IRS correspondence to us immediately, so that we can advise you on the next step.

Unfortunately, identity theft has become an all too common problem. Schaffner, Knight, Minnaugh & Company, P.C. uses strict protocols to protect clients’ information and encourages you to take steps such keeping an eye on changes to your credit ratings, confirming your earnings with the Social Security Administration website, carefully reviewing medical expenses processed by your insurer and taking precautions with information provided on social media or electronic transfers of confidential information.

In addition to these steps, the US Government recently announced a new one-stop resource for identity theft victims. Click here for a step-by-step checklist of what to do right away, and what to do next, depending on the information that’s been stolen or exposed. In addition, there are sample letters for disputing fraudulent charges, correcting information on credit reports, and getting business records relating to the theft.

Be sure to contact us if you believe you may have been a victim of identity theft. We may be able to provide additional guidance and help.