Your one stop shop for identify theft information...
Today we find another story about the IRS fumbling the ball.
Over the past few months’ evidence surfaced that the IRS has been playing politics with conservative non-profit groups. Then findings from financial watchdogs reported that the IRS held, at taxpayer expense, elaborate ‘training sessions’ involving open bars, costumed entertainers, and elaborate meals and locations (the type of expenses they would, and have, disallowed for taxpayers and businesses).
Today’s report indicates that the IRS exposed the social security numbers of “tens of thousands” of political group donors to the internet.
Political groups are required to file disclosures with the IRS; this information is then added to a “public” database. Apparently, someone at the IRS forgot to remove the social security numbers of the donors contributing to these political groups.
At this point, there is no indication of which political organizations may have been affected. The IRS “says” the breach was online for less than 24 hours.
Regardless of the time frame the social security numbers were exposed, anyone with even a rudimentary knowledge of computers could have saved a copy of this 'personal' information.
The bottom line to all this is…if you have contributed to any political group in the last few years, keep an eye on your credit reports in the coming months, the IRS could very well be the source of any identity theft you might encounter.
I would like to acknowledge Rob Shaff, of the CPA firm of Colton and Associates, of Oklahoma City, for bringing this information to my attention. Be watching future editions of Intuitive Accountant for our new ‘Tax Time’ tips and articles which Rob will be contributing.