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Identity Theft

We are proud of our track record stopping fraud, but if you find that one of today’s sophisticated criminals has managed to file a Vermont or federal return posing as you, contact us immediately.

How to Report Identity Theft

If you believe you have become a victim of identity theft, report it immediately to the one or more of the following:

  • If you wish to verify a communication that seems suspicious or report identity theft, contact us at (802) 828-2865 or toll-free (866) 828-2865 .
  • Report identity theft to the Vermont Attorney General’s Consumer Assistance Hotline at (800) 649-2424.
  • You can also report identity theft by following IRS guidance.

Please submit a copy of your completed IRS Identity Theft Affidavit to the Department. If you would like to report an instance of suspected tax fraud, please complete the Report Suspected Fraud form or contact us at (802) 828-2865.

    Be assured that the Vermont Department of Taxes will work to get every legitimate taxpayer, including victims of refund fraud, their refund as soon as possible.

    Recovering from Identity Theft

    Becoming a victim of identity theft can be devastating and recovering from identity theft can be a long and arduous process.

    Here are some resources to get you on the road to recovery:

    How to Protect Your Identity

    No one is safe from identity theft or fraud. However, there are steps you can take to guard against identity theft. Please review the following resources, and the information provided by the IRS: Identity Protection: Prevention, Detection and Victim Assistance.

    Here are a few steps you can take to help protect you and your family's identity.

    1. Review your Credit Report regularly (www.annualcreditreport.com is the only federally authorized website)
    2. Understand Child Identity Theft and how it can affect your family
    3. File your taxes early
    4. Be cautious of phone calls, letters, or emails asking for your Social Security Number
    5. Follow password security best practices when choosing a password and change the passwords for your accounts regularly
    6. Sign up for the Vermont Attorney General's Scam Alerts.

    We Recommend You File Your Taxes Online

    E-filing is still far superior to filing a paper return. Electronic filings allow us to quickly and accurately process your refund. There is no evidence that e-filing is causing identity theft. You should always make certain that any online transaction involving your personal information is secure, and tax preparation vendors are adopting best practices such as multiple methods of identification before you can access your account.

    How We Communicate with You

    We send out letters and bills to taxpayers using the United States Postal Service only. The Department also communicates with taxpayers through email and by telephone in response to a taxpayer inquiry or to obtain additional information or documentation needed to process a tax return.

    You should regard as suspicious any emails or phone calls claiming to be the Vermont Department of Taxes and be aware of the possibility of fraud. When Department representatives contact taxpayers, they will not ask for Social Security Numbers. They may reference a recent tax return and will be very specific about what is needed to process the return. If in doubt, do not hesitate to disconnect the call and call the Department at the number we publish on this website to verify the communication you received is genuine.

    If you have been contacted by an IRS telephone scam, please report it to the Vermont Attorney General at: (800) 649-2424 or visit the Consumer Assistance Program website for more information.

    Be in The Know

    Identity thieves and scam artists are always thinking of new ways to trick unsuspecting taxpayers. You should be on guard against email and phone scams, which are particularly common during tax season. For example, taxpayers have reported scams demanding immediate payment for taxes owed or requesting personal information.

    If you’re concerned about data breaches or identity theft, go to the Federal Trade Commission for a information on ways to protect yourself.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Yes. It is more important than ever that you file early. If a criminal has stolen your personal information, the criminal will try to use it to file your return before you do. Your legitimate return is your—and the Department’s— best defense against tax fraud.

    There have been well publicized data breaches in recent years at national stores, insurance companies, local merchants –the list is endless. You should carefully review the security features of any tax preparation services that you are considering, and you should contact the vendor directly with questions and concerns, particularly about the security of your past-filed returns. Please know that the Department also receives fraudulent paper returns.

    We will work with you to get your refund as soon as possible. However, it will be necessary to follow extra steps. Contact us immediately at (802) 828-2865 or (866) 828-2865.

    If the IRS or Vermont Department of Taxes discovers that someone has already filed for a tax refund in your name, you will be notified by letter. Please respond immediately and follow the instructions.

    The IRS will issue you a special PIN to enable the filing of a return if your identity is at risk. Please note that a common scam is for criminals to impersonate an IRS agent and ask for your Social Security Number. Never send your Social Security Number over email, and do not give identifying information over the telephone unless you have initiated the contact.

    If you have been contacted by an IRS telephone scam, please report it to the Vermont Attorney General at: (800) 649-2424 or (802) 656-3183 or visit the Consumer Assistance Program for more information.