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Pinellas County Consumer Protection and the Federal Trade Commission remind residents to be vigilant in protecting their personal information.
To help ensure public safety and welfare, Consumer Protection has scheduled several events from January 29 - February 2 in recognition of Tax Identity Theft Awareness Week.
The week is dedicated to educating the public about how to protect themselves from tax-related crimes. Tax identity theft occurs when an individual uses stolen personal information such as a Social Security number, to file a fraudulent tax return and obtain a refund.
You can see a list of these events at http://www.pinellascounty.org/consumer/pdf/tax_identity_theft_week_flyer.pdf
A Consumer Protection investigator will be available to answer questions and provide free resources on identity theft and repair.
Proactive steps to lessen the chance of becoming a victim include:
The Federal Trade Commission is holding a number of events in recognition of the week as well, including webinars and Twitter chats. For more information, visit https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/features/feature-0029-tax-identity-theft-awareness-week.
Those who believe they are victims of tax identity theft should contact the IRS Identity Protection Specialized Unit at (800) 908-4490. For more information about identity theft, contact Pinellas County Consumer Protection at (727) 464-6200 or visit www.pinellascounty.org/consumer.