As the income tax deadline looms Monday, the problem of tax-related identity theft continues to grow, and Florida leads the nation in the crime.
Last week Florida Sen. Bill Nelson filed an improved version of a previous bill to help fraud victims. Among other things, it would require the IRS to get victims’ refunds back to them more quickly. There’s currently a backlog of 300,000 cases and an average wait time of more than 180 days.
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Identity-theft related complaints, 2012
Nine of the top 10 cities in the nation hardest hit by this crime are in Florida.
The Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties metropolitan area is first.
For every 100,000 residents, 645 residents were victims and 35,914 complaints were received.
Naples-Maarco Island ranked second at 397 victims per 100,000 residents.
Tampa ranked third at 352 victims per 100,000 residents.
Source: Federal Trade Commission