Tax Scam Affected More Than Previously Thought

The Internal Revenue Service revealed last week hackers had gained access to the tax returns of as many as 334,000 people — 220,000 more than previously thought — allowing the hackers to use Social Security numbers, birth dates and street addresses in order to file fraudulent returns and then collecting the refunds.

The North Carolina Medical Society (NCMS) received 74 calls over the last two tax seasons from members who had been affected by this scam, leading the NCMS and other state medical societies to believe doctors were a specifically targeted group. The NCMS worked with the State Attorney General’s Office and the FBI to provide members with information on how to report their lost refund and help authorities crack the case.

The IRS said the criminals had hacked into the records of people from all walks of life through a software program call “Get Transcript,” which allowed taxpayers to retrieve returns from previous years. The IRS shut down the “Get Transcript” service in May. The agency will be sending 220,000 letters to those additional people whose records were compromised.


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