Keeping your identity safe this tax season

Keeping your identity safe this tax season

YUMA, Ariz. – The Internal Revenue Service says it has stopped more than 19 million suspicious tax filings according to their latest statics.

The government agency also says, more than $63 million in fraudulent tax returns have been filed. Some residents in Yuma say they are protecting themselves from identity theft.

Gary Wistrom of Yuma says, “I just don’t give out certain information. If they want it and I don’t feel like it’s their business they don’t get it.”

Carol Weigum of Yuma says, “Well I have a wallet that has the shield in it, and it says that it does that, so I assume that it does and my papers I shred.”

Janet Torricellas of Better Business Bureau Yuma says those residents are right on track.

Torricellas says, “Identity theft can be taken from our computer, through our mail, through our inboxes and email there is many ways that they can take our identity.”

The BBB also offers suggestions when shopping online, like making sure to pay attention to the search engine.

Torricellas adds, “It’s very important to make sure that you are visiting the appropriate website make sure that you look at every name that is on the URL and make sure there is no misspelled letter or words.”

The last tip is to always be protective of unknown callers.

“Any personal information that you are providing to them from that point on will be safe and secure, and that they will not be selling it to any third party you have to make sure that every website that you visit you have to make sure they have privacy policy,” said Torricellas.

About The Author

Eduardo Santiago joined the FOX 9 and ABC 5 news team in February, 2012. That’s the same year KECY launched its very first local newscast. He has been covering local news in Yuma and the Imperial Valley since his start as a KYMA photojournalist in 2006. During his decade in broadcasting, Eduardo has covered some of the biggest stories in the Desert Southwest – from President Bush’s visit to Yuma, Ariz. to the uncovering of drug tunnels that span the US-Mexico border. One of the most memorable stories Eduardo covered was the 2010 Easter Earthquake that rocked the Imperial Valley, Mexicali, and Yuma. Eduardo, along with his news team, won an award from the Associated Press for best coverage of an ongoing story following the quake. Before he made his move to TV, Eduardo was just a kid born in East Los Angeles, where he spent his early childhood. His parents moved him to Mexicali, B.C. Mexico, where he did most of his elementary school education. He finally landed in El Centro, where he graduated from Central Union High School in 2005. Eduardo is currently a student at Imperial Valley College. You can find Eduardo hanging out in the Imperial Valley and Yuma with his family on any given weekend. His off-screen passion is playing guitar and sports.

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