W-2 In Mail Box

Tuesday, Dec 11, 18

Be careful, its Christmas morning time for ID Thieves. This is the only time of year many people have their most important Identifier sitting unprotected in their mailboxes. What’s this valuable Identifier? It is your Social Security Number. Santa himself could not find a better gift for a thief than your Social Security Number.

This time of year, most consumers get many different documents mailed to them which includes either their complete or partial Social Security Number. This information is listed on almost any tax documents you get. These include W-2’s, 1099, and interest paid or interest received statements. It is very important you protect your Social Security Number at all times.

For an Identity Thief, your Social Security Number is the Holy Grail. Most people think ID Thieves only look to open credit in their names and then use the cards. This certainly does happen but is only one way your Social Security Number can be used. A recent trend of Id Theft which is growing at an alarming rate is Tax Return Theft. Unfortunately, these thieves are not looking to pay your taxes for you; they are looking to steal your refund. The IRS claims they are working on better systems to protect consumers but for now, it is very easy to become a victim.

So how can you keep from falling victim to Tax Return Theft? Protect your Social Security Number at all times. To the IRS, your Social Security Number is everything. A more drastic and scary solution to protect your refund is to file your taxes early prior to any potential thief filing in your name and Social Security Number. I call this a scary solution because it is sad to think you would have to stoop to such measures. Recently, a key person with the FTC was quoted by CNBC, “It really can be a race to the IRS,” said Steve Toporoff, coordinator of the ‎Identity Protection Program at the FTC. ” takes Id Theft very seriously. A consumer can be their best protector if they have the proper education on exactly how to protect themselves from becoming a victim.

About the Author

Credit Reporting / Scoring Expert, Chris McConville is the President of Credit Education at and founder of where he works as an Expert Credit Witness in both Federal and State Court. With working in the credit and mortgage fields since 1991, he’s dedicated to sharing his knowledge to educate consumers.

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