Your Tax Return Info Could Be For Sale on The Dark Web

dark web

Most ordinary folks don’t spend much time thinking about what’s going on in the underworld known as the dark web.

In fact, most people are probably completely unaware of the existence of this world. However, it’s time to bring the goings on into the light because hundreds of thousands of law-abiding taxpayers are falling prey to identity theft due to the activity of criminals in this underworld.

I just came across an article on AccountingToday.com about the bulk sales of full taxpayer information that criminals can purchase as easily as most of us make purchases on amazon.com, maybe even easier. The information is sold from $2 – $50 depending on the income level of the individuals whose information is being sold. There is a menu of items available including credit card information, PayPal login information, access to hacked computers and W-2 2016 information.

According to the article, “Tax filing information is probably the most premium type of record criminals can buy on the underground. It goes for $40 or $50, and unlike credit cards, never expires. People can try and get loans in someone’s name, make fake IDs in people’s names, get credit. And of course, the top target is filing a tax return in someone’s name and getting the refund.”

Tax season is nearly over but the criminal activity never stops.

In my opinion there cannot be too many articles about these cyber crimes. The level of sophistication of cyber criminals is growing. Maybe sophistication is the wrong word. Sleaze factor may be more appropriate. Their ability to pull the wool over the eyes of regular taxpayers, human resource executives and even tax preparers is getting better all the time. Protect your information.