The tax deadline for 2014 was April 15th. For the majority of Americans, the stress ended once their tax package was submitted to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). This was not the case for a group of D.C. physicians. A recent Washington Post article stated that at least a couple dozen physicians were targeted by a new tax scam. The Medical Society of the District of Columbia (MSDC), advised that “scammers appear to have obtained the Social Security numbers and other personal identifying information of physicians, nurse practitioners, and other health care providers to use in fraudulent tax filings. The goal of the scam artists was to steal their victims’ tax refunds.”
As matters progressed, more and more states reported incidents of the tax fraud scheme. The IRS then released a statement responding to the increased levels of fraud, stating, “The IRS has more than 3,000 employees working on identity theft cases. We have trained more than 35,000 employees who work with taxpayers to recognize and provide assistance when identity theft occurs. We are focused on preventing detecting and resolving identify theft cases as soon as possible.”
The MSDC has been working diligently alongside other Government agencies to ascertain the root cause of the fraud scheme. It is clear that tax fraud has become a critical threat in our nation. The Federal Trade Commission believes that nearly half of all ID fraud is now tax related. As we move forward, it is increasingly important for physicians to protect their sensitive data, and continuously monitor their financials for fraudulent activity.
By: Tyler Kehoe