The deadline for individual income tax returns to be filed in the United States passed this week. The U.S. Internal Revenue Service is expecting that, amid the torrent of more than 146 million individual tax returns it will receive, many online, millions will have been filed using stolen social security numbers and other personal information. In 2011, says the Treasury Department’s inspector general for tax administration, there were 1.5 million successful attempts to fraudulently collect money with faked tax returns. They cost the government an estimated US $5 billion, not including the cost of trying to identify the instances of fraud and tracking down the perpetrators. Last year, crooks made off with 1.8 million ill-gotten refunds.
- Name: Alan Smith
- Location: Scotts Valley, CA, United States