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‘We were robbed’ couple says following alleged TurboTax hack

Posted at 7:34 PM, Feb 09, 2015
and last updated 2015-02-10 08:09:55-05

CAROLINE COUNTY, Va. - "We were robbed."

That is how Curtis and Stephanie Tompkins describe their tax filing process so far.

On Saturday, the couple attempted to file their taxes online using the site TurboTax, it's what they used for the last several years.

But when they logged in, it said "Congratulations" on already filing their returns.

"We went into this secure site to do so and apparently its been hacked and somebody is getting fraudulent money under our name," Curtis Tompkins said.

It is still unclear how the hackers struck, but the Tompkins believe they were able to log in to the software site and once they did that they successfully downloaded last year's tax return. From there they used that data to fill out this year's return, requesting to recieve the federal refund in a prepaid card. The total fraudulent refund was close to $5,000, with more than $4,000 of that coming from the federal government.

After CBS 6 reached out to the tax preparation software site, Julie Miller, a spokeswoman, released this statement -- promising they would do their part to fix this ASAP:

"Unfortunately, tax fraud is a growing industry problem across the country. The tax preparation industry, including Intuit, is actively engaged with IRS to fight fraud."

"It is easier than you think," Steve Walls, a CPA in the Richmond area said.

Walls said if you have someone's previous tax return, you are able to successfully file a subsequent year's return with little trouble. After all, income data and employer ID's rarely change from year to year.

"There are examples of prisoners in state penitentiaries who have access to the internet who have filed," Walls said.

The Tompkins remind all to have secure passwords if they use a tax preparation site and to check for possible fraud ASAP -- fearing if they would have waited until April, the thieves would have already spent their money.