KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Experts say tax season is a dangerous time for identity theft. They also say the longer you wait, the better chance you have of getting your identity stolen. Then when your tax return comes through, you don't get the check. Somebody else does.
Identity Theft Risk Management Specialist and Pickpocket Entertainer Gene Turner knows a thing or two about stealing IDs. Fortunately, Gene uses his skills for good.
He came to the FOX 4 studio and taught Mark Alford a few things about how to protect yourself from getting your identity stolen.
Gene said if thieves can get a hold of your social security number, they can actually file taxes before you do and get your tax return.
One big tip he tells everyone: don't carry your social security card around in your wallet or purse. If you do, one chance run-in with a slick pickpocket could land your identity in the hands of some unsavory individuals.
Gene also recommends women carry their purses close to their body with the zippers are zipped up and faced in toward the body.
He mentioned one lady in California who had had 81 people in 17 states reporting wages using her social security number. Before she knew it, the IRS was coming to her for the taxes.
Another big recommendation, never give your social security number out over the phone.