Attacks/Breaches

2/15/2018
05:20 PM
Connect Directly
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

IRS Reports Steep Decline in Tax-Related ID Theft

Research group Javelin confirms that the numbers are trending in the right direction, with total fraud losses dropping more than 14% to $783 million.

The Internal Revenue Service has reported a significant decrease in tax-related identity theft for the second year in a row, pointing to its Security Summit program with state tax agencies and the tax industry as the reason for the improved numbers.

The Security Summit program, which was formed in 2015 to combat tax-related identity theft, provides multiple behind-the-scenes safeguards to protect taxpayers such as providing security best practices tips and enhancing taxpayer authentication procedures, for example. 

According to the IRS, the agency in 2017 received 242,000 reports from taxpayers that they were victims of tax-related identity theft, compared to 401,000 in 2016 - a drop of nearly 40%.

"These dramatic declines reflect the continuing success of the Security Summit effort," says Acting IRS Commissioner David Kautter. "This partnership between the IRS, states and tax community is helping protect taxpayers against identity theft. More work remains in this effort, an we look forward to continuing this collaborative effort to fight identity theft and refund fraud."

Some Progress

Al Pascual, senior vice president, research director and head of fraud and security at Javelin Strategy & Research, says that while the IRS has made progress, taxpayers need to understand that criminals are still keeping up the pressure.

Javelin, which tracks and conducts research on identity theft, found that reported incidents of tax-related identity fraud actually increased from 392,000 in 2016 to 425,000 in 2017. Pascual says these are people who told Javelin they were hit with tax-related identity fraud, but might not have necessarily reported it to the IRS.

The good news overall is that the total number of actual refund loss has gone down – as has the average amount, he says. Actual refund loss declined to $783 million in 2017, from $914 million in 2016. And the average individual refund loss dropped a little more than 14% to $1,750 in 2017, down from $2,214 in 2016.

"What's happened is that there are more cases, but the criminals are getting away with less money," Pascual says. "Overall, it's trending in the right direction because the total amount of money stolen has gone down."

Related Content:

 

 

Black Hat Asia returns to Singapore with hands-on technical Trainings, cutting-edge Briefings, Arsenal open-source tool demonstrations, top-tier solutions and service providers in the Business Hall. Click for information on the conference and to register.

Steve Zurier has more than 30 years of journalism and publishing experience, most of the last 24 of which were spent covering networking and security technology. Steve is based in Columbia, Md. View Full Bio

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Valentine's Emails Laced with Gandcrab Ransomware
Kelly Sheridan, Staff Editor, Dark Reading,  2/14/2019
High Stress Levels Impacting CISOs Physically, Mentally
Jai Vijayan, Freelance writer,  2/14/2019
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon
Current Issue
5 Emerging Cyber Threats to Watch for in 2019
Online attackers are constantly developing new, innovative ways to break into the enterprise. This Dark Reading Tech Digest gives an in-depth look at five emerging attack trends and exploits your security team should look out for, along with helpful recommendations on how you can prevent your organization from falling victim.
Flash Poll
How Enterprises Are Attacking the Cybersecurity Problem
How Enterprises Are Attacking the Cybersecurity Problem
Data breach fears and the need to comply with regulations such as GDPR are two major drivers increased spending on security products and technologies. But other factors are contributing to the trend as well. Find out more about how enterprises are attacking the cybersecurity problem by reading our report today.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2019-7399
PUBLISHED: 2019-02-17
Amazon Fire OS before 5.3.6.4 allows a man-in-the-middle attack against HTTP requests for "Terms of Use" and Privacy pages.
CVE-2019-8392
PUBLISHED: 2019-02-17
An issue was discovered on D-Link DIR-823G devices with firmware 1.02B03. There is incorrect access control allowing remote attackers to enable Guest Wi-Fi via the SetWLanRadioSettings HNAP API to the web service provided by /bin/goahead.
CVE-2019-8394
PUBLISHED: 2019-02-17
Zoho ManageEngine ServiceDesk Plus (SDP) before 10.0 build 10012 allows remote attackers to upload arbitrary files via login page customization.
CVE-2019-8395
PUBLISHED: 2019-02-17
An Insecure Direct Object Reference (IDOR) vulnerability exists in Zoho ManageEngine ServiceDesk Plus (SDP) before 10.0 build 10007 via an attachment to a request.
CVE-2019-8389
PUBLISHED: 2019-02-17
A file-read vulnerability was identified in the Wi-Fi transfer feature of Musicloud 1.6. By default, the application runs a transfer service on port 8080, accessible by everyone on the same Wi-Fi network. An attacker can send the POST parameters downfiles and cur-folder (with a crafted ../ payload) ...