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IRS Failed To Notify Taxpayers Of Disclosures

The IRS failed to notify taxpayers of potential threads to their personal information. A report released July 14 by the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration states that the Internal Revenue Service doesn’t always follow agency protocol when it comes to notifying taxpayers of inadvertent disclosures of personally identifiable information.

For the study, the TIGTA - J. Russell George - reviewed a statistical sample of 98 case files of reported disclosure incidents from fiscal years 2009 and 2010. It found that not all taxpayers were notified in a proper or timely matter; 35 of the cases revealed a failure to notify affected taxpayers within 45 days.

“It is troubling that although the IRS has many processes and regulations that protect taxpayer information, there are times when taxpayer information is inadvertently disclosed,” the TIGTA said.

The IRS has four systems to detect disclosure incidents, and in the review, the TIGTA says it found 815 potential disclosures that were previously unidentified by the IRS. The TIGTA offered four recommendations for the IRS as a result of the report: better employee education, procedure revisions, and the introduction of new timeliness measures and controls. 

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