As we wind down 2015, it’s important to remember that identity thieves may be looking ahead to the upcoming 2016 tax season.  Krebs on Security, an in-depth security news and investigation blog, presents a good article on the latest battle between the IRS and the criminals looking to file bogus tax refunds.

And while the IRS is steadily identifying potential problems and implementing new technology solutions, each of us can take a few additional steps to lessen the risk that we will be a victim of refund fraud. In summary, here are three things the author suggests can boost your protection:

  • File before the fraudsters do it for you. Getting your documentation into your CPA as quickly as possible can speed up the preparation process for all involved, thus reducing the risk.
  • Request a free copy of your credit report. Credit monitoring services can be helpful in alerting you to any suspicious activity.
  • Monitor, then freeze your credit file.  A security freeze essentially blocks any thieves or potential creditors from being able to view or “pull” your credit file, until you “unfreeze” at a later date.

To read the full article and tips, click here.