The New York State Department of Taxation and Finance stopped 252,000 bogus refund claims in 2014, saving taxpayers $450 million, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced in a press release.

Already this year, the Department has stopped $331 million in fraudulent and erroneous refund claims—a trend projecting the total savings to taxpayers will exceed $500 million in 2015.

“By using cutting-edge fraud detection technologies, this administration is taking a stand against tax scammers seeking to benefit at the expense of hardworking New York taxpayers,” Governor Cuomo said. “These ongoing efforts will ensure that fraud is stopped in its tracks and that tax dollars are returned to those that are entitled to it.”

The Department automatically reviews each return it receives. The Fraud Analysis and Selection Team detects patterns in tax return data that indicate fraud schemes or identity theft.

Of the 10 million returns it processes annually, the Department of Taxation and Finance identifies hundreds of thousands of questionable returns due to errors or outright fraud. When criminal activity is suspected, the case is investigated and referred to criminal prosecutors.