CHESTER, Conn. (WTNH) — IT expert Michael Lowery has accepted the fact his social security number could get in the wrong hands, but what he didn’t expect was how TurboTax handled his call.
“Social security’s a gold standard you don’t want to lose, but the truth is we put them on paper most of our lives,” said Lowery. “They’re kind of out there and available.”
He says about two weeks ago he learned someone stole his SSN along with his name. When he tried to do his taxes at his accountant, he found out someone else had completed them on TurboTax January 25th.
“They [TurboTax] did confirm that there was another account that was created using my social,” said Lowery.
But, he says they refused to shut down the fraudulent account.
“They actually told me that it wasn’t my account to shut down,” said Lowery. “They understood that it was my social security number, but it wasn’t my account to shut down, which kind of set me back a little.”
TurboTax spokesperson Julie Miller says that when Lowery called, he was not directed to the correct agents. She promised the account would be erased.
Miller says there’s no way TurboTax can stop thieves from creating an account if they have a person’s name and social security number. Plus, she says tax fraud is on the rise because of identity theft across the industry due to security breaches at places like Home Depot, Target, and Anthem.
“All I wanted them to do was say any information they have in their systems is locked down, I don’t have to worry about anything happening again,” said Lowery.
Lowery says TurboTax delivered Wednesday afternoon. They promised the fake accounts and any previous old account with his name would be deleted. Also, Turbo ax provided protection monitoring for his family.