As time goes on we become more aware of the fact that identity theft is not just about stealing credit. But there is still a long ways to go in completely dispelling that myth. By focusing so much attention on credit cards and bank accounts, we may be completely ignoring other areas of risk, like our social security number.
It’s tax season right now and a requirement on all tax returns is your social security number. Your employer reports your income to the IRS using your social security number, but what if another employer you don’t work for is reporting income attached to your social security number?
It happens according to 2008 FTC statistics, the top states for employment related identity theft are:
- Arizona 33%
- Texas 27%
- New Mexico 23%
- Colorado 22%
- California 20%
*percentage of reported identity theft cases*
The consequences for employment identity theft can include Tax Audits, loss of Tax return funds and charges for additional taxes owed.
There are so many suggestions on how to combat this trend but the most simple one has been overlooked, stop giving your social security number to everyone who asks for it! Everyone who asks does not have a right or need to have it.