The Security Summit, a partnership between the IRS, state tax agencies, and private-sector tax industry executives, met on June 28, 2016 to review its first-year successes and strategize for 2017. The Summit focused on improving authentication procedures, information sharing, cybersecurity, and public outreach to help keep taxpayers’ data and money safe.

Highlights from 2016 include:

  • Improving internal processing filters to prevent $1.1 billion in fraudulent refunds from being claimed by identity thieves;
  • Reducing the number of potential taxpayer victims, as evidenced by a 48 percent drop in submissions through the IRS Identity Theft Victim Assistance function between 2015 and 2016;
  • Reducing the number of bank rejections of suspicious refunds by 66 percent; and
  • Expanding the reach of public awareness campaigns and warnings of emerging tax-related scams.

Plans for 2017 focus on improving taxpayer and return preparer identification processes, further expanding public awareness campaigns, and creating a process for private financial institutions to assist states with the identification of suspicious refunds.

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