What is an IP Pin?
An identify protection pin (IP Pin) is a method used by the IRS to verify your identify. An IP Pin is a 6-digit number assigned and issued by the IRS. It is different than an e-file pin. A scam that crooks like to use is filing fraudulent tax returns using someone else’s social security number. An IP Pin helps to prevent this type of fraud when the IRS processes your tax return. When the IRS identifies that your SSN has an IP Pin requirement, it acts as an authentication number to validate the correct owner of the SSN on the tax return. If the IRS issued you an IP Pin, it must be entered on your tax return. If the IP Pin is not entered, your tax return will be rejected. This is how it prevents someone else from using your SSN to file a tax return.
Who uses an IP Pin?
Not all people need to use an IP Pin to file their taxes. If the IRS identifies fraud, an identify theft indicator is placed on your account. The IRS will issue an IP Pin in this case or if you “opted-in” to receive an IP Pin. You may opt-in to receive an IP Pin if you received a letter from the IRS inviting you. Or, if you filed your federal tax return last year in Florida, Georgia or the District of Columbia there is an IRS Pilot Program offering you to request an IP Pin. You do not have to be victim of identity theft to participate in the pilot program. Once you have been issued an IP Pin, you may not opt-out and most people will be required to enter an IP Pin on their tax return every year. An IP Pin is never reused. A CP01A Notice is mailed with a new IP PIN every year. They are usually mailed in late December or early January each year.
How do I Get an IP Pin?
There is more information available on the IRS frequently asked question page regarding the Identity Protection Personal Identification Number (IP Pin)