As more and more business is conducted and more and more transactions are carried out online, the need for security measures to help protect individuals’ personal information is greater than ever—and the risks associated with a security lapse are also higher than ever before.
Many people are worried about the security and safety of their information following the recent IRS data breach. More than 330,000 United States citizens were affected by the breach in security. In this security issue, criminals used stolen data from other sources, such as a Social Security number or birth date, to gain access to past tax returns. The breached records were used to file fraudulent tax returns, resulting in nearly $50 million being stolen from the IRS.
While the IRS has stated they will provide free credit monitoring services to those affected, it is still possible that your personal information is under threat. In order to help eligible taxpayers prevent the fraudulent use of their Social Security number, an IP PIN can be used. If you’re wondering whether to visit your accountants in Elkhorn, WI about obtaining an IP PIN, here’s some basic information to keep in mind.
What is an IP PIN?
An IP PIN is a six-digit number assigned to eligible taxpayers in order to prevent the misuse of their Social Security number on fraudulent federal tax returns. Once an IP PIN is received, it must be used to confirm the taxpayer’s identity on the current tax return.
What does it do?
The IP PIN acts as a secondary validation of your identity, accompanying a Social Security number. If a return is filed and the Social Security number or IP PIN number is either incorrect or missing, the IRS’ system will reject the submitted tax return until it is submitted with the correct information. This method will work regardless of whether the return is being filed electronically or on paper.
Who is eligible for the IP PIN?
You may choose to get an IP PIN if one of the following applies to you:
- You filed your federal tax return last year in Florida, Georgia or the District of Columbia.
- You received a letter from the IRS inviting you to get an IP PIN.
Once you determine that you are eligible for an IP PIN, you will need the following information to have it assigned: your Social Security number, your date of birth, an email address, your filing status and the mailing address from your most recent tax return. If all the information you provide is correct, you should be assigned an IP PIN.
Ultimately, the security of your information is vital when filing a federal tax return or in any financial situation. At A Plus Accounting LLC Traveling Bean Counters, we are here to help you ensure that your personal information is completely secure. Call our offices today and speak to one of our accountants in Elkhorn, WI to schedule an appointment. We can help you determine if you are eligible for an IP PIN and ensure both the safety and the accuracy of your tax return.