Tax Professionals and Security
The IRS continues to ramp up suggestions and security to fight back against hackers. Recently, the IRS began to urge tax professionals to consider using ‘drive encryption’ in order to protect all the data stored on their computers.
Drive encryption is one of the most secure ways a personal computer or smaller network can be protected. Drive encryption uploads software that attaches itself to every file and all the software on the computer, it then encrypts all the files to make them unintelligible to any unauthorized people. This comes as the IRS continues to enhance their compliance for paid tax preparers.
To further their goals of taxpayer security, the IRS has released Publication 4557 (Rev. 6-2018), “Safeguarding Taxpayer Data”. The IRS also says that client data should be backed up on external hard drives or in cloud storage, and lastly they suggest limiting or disabling internet access for computers that store sensitive taxpayer information.
If all of this seems overwhelming and over precautionary, it assuredly is not too much. Understanding the threats that exist on the internet is imperative for professional tax prepares so that they may protect their customer data. Tax fraud is a growing sector of hacking and scams, so protecting your personal and others data is crucial. If you need more information on what the IRS suggests look toward Publication 4557 (Rev. 6-2018), “Safeguarding Taxpayer Data”. If you have other questions regarding taxes or data, contact us at the Center for Financial, Legal & Tax, Inc.