SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — The state of Illinois will start accepting income returns for 2017 on Monday, the same day the federal government begins accepting returns.

The Illinois Department of Revenue says the fastest and most secure way to receive tax refunds is to file taxes electronically and request direct deposit into a checking or savings account.

Agency director Connie Beard says the department’s fraud prevention efforts have resulted in more than $31 million in savings last year. She says that’s a 52 percent increase from 2016.

The department anticipates direct deposit refunds to be issued four weeks from the time error-free electronically filed returns are submitted. State officials say 84 percent of Illinois returns were filed electronically last year. Illinois’ free online tax account management program is called MyTax Illinois .