Protecting Your Identity

Various agencies that focus on protecting identities and personal information recommend the following steps for protecting your identity:

  • Do not carry identification with your Social Security Number (SSN) on it.
  • If someone asks for a SSN, always ask why because it is not always required.
  • Keep personal and confidential information in a secure place.
  • Secure your devices using anti-virus software. You should also always keep security applications and device operating systems updated and always enable a computer’s firewall.
  • Use strong passwords and never share your passwords.
  • Check your free credit report annually at www.annualcreditreport.com.
  • Monitor wage earnings by examining your statement from the Social Security Administration.
  • Never give personal information through unencrypted email, social media, or text messaging. Unless you initiated the call, never give personal information over the phone.
  • Take extra precautions when discarding personal or confidential information, including when discarding or selling computers, smartphones, and other devices containing such information.

Identity Protection PIN (IP PIN)

An Identity Protection PIN (IP PIN) is a six-digit number that prevents someone else from filing a tax return using your Social Security number. The IP PIN is known only to you and the IRS and helps verify your identity when you file your electronic or paper tax return.

Starting in 2021, you can voluntarily opt into the IP PIN program as a proactive way to protect yourself from tax-related identity theft.

How to get an IP PIN

Use the online Get an IP PIN tool

  • An IP PIN is valid for one calendar year.
  • You must obtain a new IP PIN each year.
  • The IP PIN tool is generally unavailable mid-November through mid-January each year.

 

Don’t reveal your IP PIN to anyone. It should be known only to your tax professional and only when you are ready to sign and submit your return. The IRS or ADOR will never ask for your IP PIN. Phone calls, email or texts asking for your IP PIN are scams.

For more information on getting an Identity Protection PIN, see https://www.irs.gov/identity-theft-fraud-scams/get-an-identity-protection-pin.

All questions or issues should be directed to the IRS.


What to Do if You Are the Victim of Tax-Related Identity Theft

If you believe that you have been the victim of tax-related identity theft, follow these steps:

  1. File your tax return on paper and include one of the following two documents
    • Identify Theft Affidavit (Arizona Form 439), or
    • IRS Identity Theft Affidavit (Form 14039)
  2. Send your tax return and ID theft documentation via fax or mail to:
    • Arizona Department of Revenue
      Attn: Identity Theft Call Center
      Fax: (602) 716-7988
    • Arizona Department of Revenue
      P.O. Box 29086
      Phoenix, AZ 85038-9086
      Attn: Identity Theft Call Center

If you have any questions or require assistance, please contact the ADOR Identity Theft Call Center at (602) 716-6300 or toll-free at (844) 817-9691.


How to Get a Copy of a Fraudulently Filed Tax Return

A victim of identity theft may request a redacted copy (one with some information blacked out) of a fraudulent Arizona individual income tax return filed using the identity theft victim’s name and SSN. To request a copy, taxpayers must complete Arizona Form 470 and mail it to:

Arizona Department of Revenue
Copy Desk
P.O. Box 29216
Phoenix, AZ   85038-9216


Additional Steps to Take if Victim of Identity Theft

There are a number of resources available to assist victims of identity theft in the process of clearing their names and accounts.

 

To file a complaint, obtain forms, get information on what can be done to protect a decedent’s identity, or learn more about the Arizona Identity Theft Coalition visit the Arizona Attorney General ID Theft website.

Taxpayers can also contact one of the three major credit bureaus to place a fraud alert on their credit records: