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5 Tips to Protect Your Personal Information During Tax Season

5 Tips to Protect Your Personal Information During Tax Season

Closeup of Computer Screen With Favicon and Address Bar

Tax season is a time when many people are vulnerable to identity theft and various other forms of cybercrime. Here are some tips to help you protect your data during tax season:

1. Verify your identity with the IRS ahead of time: Through the IRS, you can create an identity protection PIN. The identity protection PIN verifies your identity with the IRS and prevents fraudsters from using your social security number to file taxes. This PIN remains private and can only be accessed by you and the IRS.

2. Use secure filing websites: If the tax filing website you access does not have “https” at the beginning, it is most likely an unsecured site, and you should not engage with the site. It is encouraged that you use two-factor authentication or 2FA, such as secure passcodes and email confirmations, for additional security.

3. Create strong passwords: Lengthy and complex passwords are more difficult to guess making it less likely for your system to be compromised.

4. Beware of phishing emails: No matter your company size, you have most likely experienced phishing emails. These emails appear to be from within the company or from someone reaching out to the company. It is crucial to vet all emails prior to responding or taking any action. Double-check the email address, check for official company branding, and recognize when the email contains an odd request, such as asking you to resend documents you have already sent or asking for files directly through email and not through encrypted email or a secure portal.

5. Verify payment instructions: Only work through the IRS directly or a trusted Financial Advisor to verify and submit payment on any taxes owed. Be sure to pull any contact information for the IRS directly from the Official IRS website.

Tax Season is a peak time for elevated cyber risk. Be sure to consider the steps mentioned above and other precautions while you access and share sensitive information online.

Fortis Cyber Solutions does not offer tax advice. This blog is not meant to act as tax advice. For advice on taxes, consult a trusted tax professional.

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