Security Summit focuses special week on protecting taxpayer’s information

(AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
Published: Nov. 18, 2022 at 3:22 PM CST
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WASHINGTON, D.C. (WSAW) - The IRS, in part with the Security Summit, state tax agencies, and the nation’s tax industry, is reminding taxpayers of the annual National Tax Security Awareness Week which takes place from Nov. 28-Dec. 2.

Now in its seventh year, it focuses attention on empowering taxpayers to protect sensitive financial information against identity thieves as the holidays and the 2023 tax season get closer.

With the holidays and tax season approaching, the Summit warns taxpayers and tax professionals to take extra steps to protect their financial and tax information. People face a heightened risk in coming months as fraudsters take advantage of the holiday season to trick people into sharing sensitive personal information by email, text message and online which identity thieves use to try to file tax returns and steal refunds.

To help combat this, a week-long series of educational materials to help protect individuals, businesses, and tax professionals from identity theft is featured including a Nov. 29 webinar titled “Deeper Dive into Emerging Cyber Crimes and Crypto Tax Compliance.”

“Taxpayers and tax professionals need to remain vigilant for increasingly sophisticated scams that look to steal sensitive financial information,” said IRS Acting Commissioner Doug O’Donnell. “The Security Summit effort focuses on highlighting simple steps that small businesses and people in all walks of life can take to protect their information, helping them avoid problems at tax time.”

The IRS and Summit partners continue to see constantly evolving threats and scams. These schemes frequently use recent tragedies or charitable groups to coax people into sharing sensitive financial data. As Security Summit partners increased their joint defenses against identity theft in recent years, including through ISAC, fraudsters have increasingly looked for ways to obtain sensitive personal financial information to help slip past common defenses. Making tax professionals a tempting target for scam artists.

“This collaborative effort continues to thwart identity thieves, helping protect taxpayers and tax professionals while also safeguarding the federal and state tax systems essential to running our nation,” says Julie Magee, Tax Regulatory Lead at Cash App Taxes and an original member of the Security Summit who currently serves as the group’s communications co-chair.