Yes, its tax season and you would think the worse thing that can happen to you is a call from the Canada Revenue Agency or CRA.
According to Scambook.com, an online resolution platform, during tax season people need to take certain safety precautions to protect personal identity from being stolen by scammers.
Scambook.com said that they have seen a lot of sensitive, private information being exchanged during tax season, which can lead to more vulnerabilities.
During its time online Scambook has resolved about $10 million in reported consumer damages and is recommending the following five tips to protect consumers’ personal identification during tax preparation:
- Know Who’s Helping You: Work with someone familiar and trustworthy. If thinking of hiring a new accountant or commercial tax preparer, conduct proper research first. Be sure to read all reviews carefully and check for business complaints on Scambook.com.
- File Your Taxes ASAP: Filing sooner rather than later gives identity thieves less time to file tax returns using others’ Social Security numbers.
- Use Secure WiFi to E-File: If filing through TurboTax or another online program, be sure to send your personal information through a secure password protected wireless Internet connection.
- Mail Taxes Personally: Don’t put your taxes in others’ hands. Mail the information directly at the post office to cut out the middleman.
- Watch Out for CRA Email Scams: A huge red flag is an “CRA email” since proper notification for personal information will only be sent from the CRA through regular mail. This is likely a phishing scam.
Scambook got its start to give people a voice and a community. The online site says that whether you’re a victim of fraud or bad business practices, Scambook aims to help you share your story and even find a resolution if that is what you are looking for. If you want to know how Scambook works watch this video.