ID theft leads to long, expensive fight

Victims describe an uphill battle

TAMPA - West Shore Alliance Executive Director Ron Rotella says he keeps a tight reign on his personal information. But it wasn't enough.

Off and on for the last year, Rotella says he and his accountant worked with the IRS to clear his name.  Yet, his saga continues.

The IRS rejected his 2011 return, and now they've notified the Tampa businessman that there is more trouble with the one he filed for 2012.  So far, it has cost him time and hundreds of dollars in fees paid to his CPA.

The victim suspects it is no coincidence that a thief swiped his identity about the time a prostate cancer diagnosis sent him to multiple new doctor's offices in 2011, all of whom demanded his social security number.

Law enforcement advises withholding your social security number in every instance, but be warned:  Some medical facilities won't bill your insurance company without that number, forcing you to pay the bill in full at the doctor's office.

Old papers with personal information are another of the most popular ways thieves get their hands on your identity.

Now we are taking action for your identity.

You can bring your paper documents to Westfield Citrus Park Mall, this Saturday, from 7:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

It's a limit of five boxes per vehicle, and again, paper documents only. And its all free.

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