Data breaches in 2017 exposed personal information of millions
VIRGINIA BEACH, Va., Jan. 23, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Liberty Tax, Inc. (NASDAQ:TAX)
Identity theft remains a major concern for taxpayers, especially given the number of data breaches reported by companies in 2017. Because criminals can use information gained in these data breaches to file fraudulent tax returns, Liberty Tax encourages taxpayers to file early in 2018 to lessen their chance of becoming a victim of tax identity fraud.
As a leading tax preparation franchise, Liberty Tax is a member of the IRS Security Summit, which has instituted many safeguards to help protect taxpayer data and reduce the risk of tax identity fraud. The efforts have been successful in decreasing the number of fraudulent returns that make it through the IRS system. Still, taxpayers can help themselves by filing early.
Why should taxpayers file early? The IRS often processes the first tax return it receives. Criminals who have stolen personal information know this, so they often try to beat the real taxpayer to the IRS by filing fraudulent tax returns early in the season. These fraudulent filers can gain access to personal information through data breaches.
The Identity Theft Resource Center reported that more than 174 million records were exposed in data breaches through December 27, 2017, with one of the largest being the Equifax breach. Liberty Tax reminds taxpayers that they can sign up for free identify theft protection and credit monitoring services offered by Equifax for a limited time. The deadline to enroll is January 31.
January 31 is also the deadline for employers to distribute W2s. Many taxpayers may have already received W2s and other tax forms. Taxpayers who have this information can bring it into a local Liberty Tax office and have their taxes professionally prepared. Those who haven’t yet received their W2 in the mail can visit a Liberty Tax office to see if their W2 is available for download. The service is free of charge.
Liberty Tax offices across the U.S. are open and ready to assist taxpayers with filing their 2017 tax returns. The professionals at Liberty Tax can also answer customer questions about tax reform and changes they can expect on their 2018 tax returns.
About Liberty Tax, Inc.
Founded in 1997, Liberty Tax, Inc. (NASDAQ:TAX) is the parent company of Liberty Tax Service. In the U.S. and Canada, last year, Liberty Tax prepared over two million individual income tax returns in more than 4,000 offices and online. Liberty Tax's online services are available through eSmart Tax, Liberty Online and DIY Tax, and are all backed by the tax professionals at Liberty Tax locations and its nationwide network of seasonal tax preparers. Liberty Tax also supports local communities with fundraising endeavors and contributes as a national sponsor to many charitable causes. For a more in-depth look, visit Liberty Tax Service and interact with Liberty Tax on Twitter and Facebook.
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Source: Liberty Tax, Inc.