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An Identity Protection Personal Identification Number (IP PIN) is a single-use identification number sent by the IRS to victims of identity theft who have validated their identities with IRS ‐ to prevent refund fraud.
When screening returns for possible identity theft, the IRS excludes returns with an IP PIN, which helps avoid the possibility of a "false positive" and a delayed tax refund. If a taxpayer was issued an IP PIN and does not use it when filing electronically, IRS rejects the electronically filed return and prompts the taxpayer to file on paper. Taxpayers that do not use an IP PIN or enter an incorrect IP PIN filing on paper experience processing delays as the IRS verifies the taxpayers' identity.