Skip to Content
Close Icon

Protect Yourself Against Fraud

Protect Yourself from Fraud This Tax Season

BANK offers six tips to help consumers avoid fraud during tax season.

Tax season is stressful. As W-2s and tax returns containing consumers’ personal information circulate over the internet and through the mail, cybercriminals ramp up their efforts to commit fraud. BANK wants to make sure our customers protect themselves from identity theft as they work to file their tax returns.

“Identity thieves look for every opportunity to steal your information, especially during tax season,” said Natalie Reinhart, BSA Officer at BANK. “Consumers should be on high alert and take every step they can to protect their personal and financial information.”

To help consumers do that, BANK is offering the following tips:

1. Keep your personal information private. Never provide your Social Security number or bank account information to anyone who contacts you online or over the phone.

2. Watch out for phishing emails. During tax season, fraudsters often pose as the IRS in phishing emails. Don’t be fooled. The IRS never contacts taxpayers via unsolicited email to request personal or financial data. If something seems suspicious, it probably is.

3. Shred everything. When you’re done with your receipts, banks statements and unused credit card offers, make sure you shred them before throwing them away. For papers you must keep, like tax documents, keep them in a secure place.

4. Report missing mail. Fraudsters look for monthly credit card statements, W-2s, tax refunds or other mail containing your financial information. If you don’t receive important documents from your employer or bank, or they appear to have been previously opened, contact your credit card provider, bank and the IRS immediately.

5. Protect your computer. Make sure the virus protection software on your computer is active and up to date, particularly if you plan to file your taxes online.

6. Keep an eye on your accounts. Watch your financial accounts regularly for suspicious transactions. If you see activity you don’t recognize, contact your bank immediately.

Incorporating the tips listed above can help ensure that your taxes are filed safely and prevent you from becoming a victim of identity theft. If the IRS does deny your tax return because one has previously been filed under your name, alert the IRS Identity Protection Specialized Unit immediately by calling 800-908-4490.

If you suspect fraudulent activity on your account, contact us immediately. For phone numbers of your nearest branch, visit our Locations.