IRS Leaves Millions Vulnerable to Identity Theft

By Bill McMorris, Washington Free Beacon

The IRS has put millions of taxpayers at risk of identity theft by failing to perform background checks on contractors, according to a new inspector general report.

An IG audit performed by the Treasury Department, which oversees the IRS, found that several contractors who are responsible for handling sensitive taxpayer information do not perform any criminal or credit background checks on their employees. The agency provided millions of Social Security numbers to one contractor without any screening process in place, according to the report.

“Taxpayer and other SBU information may be at risk due to a lack of background investigation requirements in five contracts for courier, printing, document recovery, and sign language interpreter services,” the IG said in a release. “For example, in one printing services contract, the IRS provided the contractor a compact disk containing 1.4 million taxpayer names, addresses, and Social Security Numbers; however, none of the contractor personnel who worked on this contract were subject to a background investigation.”

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