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IRS looking to combat identity theft and tax fraud from in-house databases

Nov 21, 2011 Karen Umpierre

The Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration release the Security Over Databases Could Be Enhanced to Ensure Taxpayer Data are Protected report which reveals Americans' personal information may be completely vulnerable to identity theft, Forbes reports. According to the report, every one of the IRS databases that the TIGTA monitored were completely accessible to hackers. A significant amount of the approximately 2,200 databases the IRS operates are running on dated security software. Although the IRS has spent approximately $1.1 million on security software to address the issue, TIGTA informs its systems continue to lack effective preventative hacking measures, the news source explains. In a statement before Congress' Subcommittee on Government Organization, Efficiency and Financial Management, Ronal A. Cimino, Deputy Assistant Attorney General for criminal matters of the tax division at the U.S. Department of Justice, said his department is increasing efforts to fight tax fraud. "While the Department will never be able to fully eradicate crimes such as identity theft and tax fraud, our persistence, dedication, and success in 11 prosecuting these cases sends a clear message to those who engage in this conduct that they will be held accountable for their actions," Cimino said.