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Protecting Your Identity

September 28, 2017
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In light of the Equifax and other data breaches that have occurred, protecting your identity is more important than ever. This article will highlight a few different agencies and government websites that you might want to visit, in order to take steps to protect your personal data.

It is recommended that you obtain your credit report from the three major credit agencies in order to review the reports for suspicious activity. The major three agencies are listed below for your reference.

 Recent news articles have brought the topic of credit freezing into the spotlight. Credit freezing is a technique that will prevent almost anyone, including any vendor that you have applied for credit with, as well as prospective employers, from accessing your credit history. If you think a credit freeze is appropriate for you, please visit the Federal Trade Commission’s website to obtain how-to information. 

The next government website is the Internal Revenue Service’s website, which should be visited if you think you are the victim of tax-related identity theft. If this is applicable to you, Form 14039, Identity Theft Affidavit, should be filed with the IRS

If you might be the victim of employment related identity theft, where someone else is working under your identify and social security number, or you want to protect your social security number, you can self-lock your identity by visiting the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services’ website. By using the self-lock, you can block someone from using your social security number, if they work for an employer that uses the E-Verify system.

Lastly, there are various services relating to personal data security, that private companies offer to the public at various rates. If you do choose to sign up with a service, we suggest that you do your research and understand what the service can do for you, both in terms of preventing a security breach and dealing with the after-effects of a security breach. 

For more information please contact your Citrin Cooperman advisor.

Mary Sheridan brings more than 20 years of client service and operational experience to her role as the partner-in-charge of tax operations for the firm’s New York City office and the U.S. co-leader of affiliate company Citrin Cooperman India LLP. She can be reached at 212.697.1000 or via email at msheridan@citrincooperman.com.