GCPD Offers Advice for Dealing with Identity Theft
Fraud often discovered during tax season.
Tax season can be a stressful time even under the best of circumstances, but can be made even more stressful when a taxpayer discovers his or her social security number has been used fraudulently.
Gwinnett County Police Department Eastside community relations officer Ofc. Heather Stafford said victims often discover identity fraud when they file their taxes.
Stafford said the Internal Revenue Service is very strict regarding what information they release.
“The IRS will not release information to the police department about an individual’s tax records,” Stafford said in an emailed statement.
According to Stafford, the first step a victim should take before filing a report with the police department is to contact the Atlanta tax advocacy office. The tax advocacy office will be able to provide the victim with information regarding the use of his or her social security number that will be useful in investigating the case.
“If they go first to get the information, they may find that the suspect lives in another state which would allow them to make a report with the jurisdiction the crime is occurring,” Stafford said.
Cases of identity theft are prosecuted according to where the crime occurs.
“Gwinnett would not work a case brought to us if the suspect is out of state committing the crime,” Stafford said.