More than $63 million in fraudulent and erroneous refunds and credits were blocked last tax season thanks in part to the Wisconsin Department of Revenue's use of identity verification tools.
“We are vigilant in our efforts to safeguard the refunds and identities of tax filers with enhanced ID verification tools,” said Richard Chandler, Wisconsin Department of Revenue Secretary.
“As reports of cybercrimes and identity theft become more common, the DOR prevents fraudulent activity by diligently reviewing filed tax returns to protect our citizens,” Sec. Chandler said. “Our systems are secure, however when fraudsters steal your identity from other sources, they may try to file a fraudulent tax return.”
“We ask tax filers to allow at up to 12 weeks processing time this season as we leverage our ID verification tools to ensure their refund is not going to someone who's stolen their personal, confidential information,” Chandler added.
How ID Verification Works
The Wisconsin Department of Revenue uses analytics to identify returns that indicate possible identity theft. When this happens, the DOR sends a letter to the tax filer asking them to complete a quiz, enter a Personal Identification Number (PIN), or submit documentation to confirm their identity. The unique PINs are a tool the DOR began using last year to help safeguard tax filers.
During the past six tax seasons, the Department stopped more than $255 million in potential fraud. The increase is due to the DOR's continuous expansion of its anti-fraud efforts and tools as more cybercriminals attempt fraud. For more information, visit the DOR's Protecting Taxpayers page.