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Tax identity theft, a real threat that should be taken seriously

You've heard the news: There's been a big spike in tax-related identity fraud recently.

And yet, most Americans are not all that concerned about it and not always doing what's needed to protect this very personal and highly-sensitive information, according to a new survey by the digital risk management firm CyberScout.

"It's a serious problem when people don't securely store their data,” said Adam Levin, founder and chairman of CyberScout.

Forty percent of the people surveyed said they store tax documents on their computer or in the cloud. Both are vulnerable to a variety of attacks. And of those who keep tax documents on a USB drive or on their computer, only 18 percent have that information encrypted.

"You need to use encrypted hard drives,” Levin said. “Then you only have to remember where you put your hard drive and your password – hopefully, a long and strong one.”

Tax ID fraud is a real threat, one that needs to taken seriously. Remember: Tax documents have your Social Security number, date of birth and other personal information. If this personally identifiable information is stolen, it's a real pain to clean up the mess that can result.

More Info: 9 Tips to beat tax identity theft

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