Cyber Safety and Security Tips for Tax Season

February 12th, 2020

Tax season is upon us and it isn't always everyone's favorite time of the year. According to a study done by Javelin Strategy and Research in 2017, nearly one in three consumers were notified that their data had been breached and they were victims of identity fraud. This, along with all the other data breaches we hear about, it is more important than ever to safeguard yourself while you are online. 

So, today we have a few cyber safety and security tips to help you ensure a safer tax season.

Phone Scams

There has been an increase in the number of phone scams that happen during this time of the year. Many times, these phone scams are directed at consumers with people claiming to be from the IRS. They call and insist that you owe them money and try to scare you into paying. 

It is important to remember that the real IRS will never contact you in this way. They will also never demand immediate payments. If you owe any money, you will more than likely receive a letter in the mail. 

Phishing Emails

Cybercriminals will also send out phishing emails in an attempt to gain vulnerable information. Do not reply to or open any unsolicited texts, emails, and social media posts. 

Cybercriminals can commit identity theft easily when you click on a link or share personal and financial information. These links may contain malware, viruses, spyware, and other software that can be installed without your consent. This can ultimately affect your computer files.

Tax Fraud

You also have to watch out for who prepares your taxes. Some people may target unsuspecting taxpayers and instead of helping you file your taxes; they are actually stealing your information. Your tax preparer should have an IRS preparer identification number. 

Cybersecurity Tips to Remember

To avoid becoming a victim this tax season, there are a few things you can do. 

  • Never click without thinking. Malicious links can be extremely damaging. Inspect every link and make sure it has come from a trusted sender before clicking on it.
  • Stick with your own devices. Try to avoid using other people's devices as much as possible. You don't want to share any of your credentials with other people, and you shouldn't allow anyone to have remote access to your computer.
  • Digital footprints. You should monitor all of your accounts for suspicious activity. Keep track of your digital footprint and delete any accounts you aren't using.
  • Secure connections. Never connect to an unsecured connection. Only connect with private networks especially if you are going to be managing private and sensitive information.
  • Secure your mobile device. Security also needs to apply to your mobile devices as well as your desktop. Always use strong passwords and biometric features. You also want to turn Bluetooth off and avoid connecting to public Wi-Fi.

Have more questions or concerns when it comes to your cybersecurity? Do you have network security issues that need to be addressed? Make sure to contact your local security company in Chico, CA so they can help ensure you have a more secure connection. 

What Our Customers Say

"I had the Alibi system installed several years ago. It has functioned flawlessly. The image quality is exellent both night and day and in all weather conditions. I particularly like the replay (which can be set at various speeds) and zoom functions of the system. Tech support from Crimefreeliving has been excellent. I have received quick responses to questions, and timely home visits — as when I changed IP carriers and my Alibi system needed to be reset. I have recommended Crimefreeliving to several friends."


"As a small business owner here in Chico we definitely saw the need for video surveillance. After expressing our needs and concerns Tim did an excellent job getting us set up with the set up with the appropriate equipment. He really took the time to address our concerns in a very friendly, professional and knowledgeable manner. I highly recommend Tim for all of your business and residential video surveillance needs."

Ron H., Owner/Auto Doctor

"I have to say I love having my security cameras at my home. Tim Truby did a wonderful job of installing the five cameras. He is very neat and cleaned everything up after the installation. He explained to me how to operate the monitor, my phone and IPad. However, I have had to call Tim because I'm not tech savvy and forget what he has told me. He usually just helps me over the phone and then all is well. I'm 80 years old and enjoy the comfort of knowing I have these security cameras."


"Tim Truby designed and installed a 32 camera system for us here at the Butte County Mosquito and Vector Control District. We had received several other quotes from security system vendors, but Tim’s quote was the least expensive. Tim also installed the system quickly and has always been available when we needed him. We are very happy with our security camera system and we can highly recommend Tim Truby for all of your surveillance system needs."

D. Weseman, Butte County Mosquito and Vector Control District

Crime Free Living updated our old video system with a new 16 Channel HD Alibi Video Security System. The old system had been added onto by different installers which resulted in a cabling mess. There were cables that worked and cables that went nowhere. It was a mess. Tim sorted it all out and installed cameras that are very clear. He also installed a monitor for our cashiers to watch hidden areas, a monitor to watch the entry door, and a monitor that allows employees to watch the outside parking and gas pump area. All work was done on time and very professional! Will always recommend Tim and Crime Free Living.

S. AM PM Chico Arco Station

"I had Tim install an Alibi Video Security System at my residence and a couple business locations. The remote view option is invaluable to absentee owners or anyone who travels a lot. The clarity and quality of the cameras have allowed for viewing employee theft. The evidence provided from the HD video cameras was fantastic! Tim was professional and provided extra value from his law enforcement background."

J. Folsom Arco Station

"Tim, I want to thank you again for doing such a fantastic job on installing a wireless IP security camera system at our dream home. The extra time that you took to hide wires, and install a clean, professional system is much appreciated. I still can’t believe the clarity, quality, and ease of use of this new system. I wished that I would have met you before our original inferior system was installed by another company. Now, whether I am at home, or monitoring the system from around the world, I know that my home and family are safe and sound."

John M.

"In April of 2017, my husband and I made a phone call to Crime Free Living that turned out to be a smart and wise decision. Amazingly, in just a few hours, Tim installed four Dome Security Cameras, weatherproof enclosures, and hooked up into our home a 23" Full HD Widescreen Security Monitor. Even more than his professional expertise was the time spent with us in making sure that this system was working correctly and properly installed on our phones so that anywhere in our travels we can monitor our new home in Magalia."

Tieka and Don S.

"I have been using Crime Free Living for the last couple years ar work and at home and I really recommend this product. Tim is a very good service provider. If he can't figure it out, he's got good tech support with the system that he offers."

Gary D.

"I have known Tim for over 10 years. To date, Time with Crime Free Living has installed two separate surveillance systems for my company. With each system, Tim has listened to my needs and custom dsigned surveillance systems for my specific needs and within my budget. The equipment used is always state of the art, the workmanship is top notch, and Tim is the example of trustworthy. I would recommend him for any job."

Steve D., Down Range Indoor Training Center

images Certifications & Training

With 16 years of experience in law enforcement, Tim Truby, CEO, is fully certified in video surveillance and training.

  • Certified Advanced Crime Prevention Specialist
  • Academy Instructor Certification
  • California POST Certification in Specialized Surveillance Equipment
  • California POST Certification in Basic Crime Prevention
    • Advanced Crime Prevention through Environmental Design
    • Certified Alibi Security Dealer
    • Enhanced Risk and Threat Assessment (FEMA)
    • Incident Command System (100 & 200)
    • Certified Cognitech Video Forensic Investigator
    • Neighborhood Watch Toolkit Trainer
    • Computer Crimes/Investigations
    • Domestic Crisis for Crisis Negotiators