Friday, May 13, 2011

IRS to Pilot E-Mail Encryption for Taxpayer Correspondence Next Year

Many practitioners have complained that the IRS’s insistence on snail mail-based correspondence is inefficient and can lead to lost mail and delays in resolving taxpayer issues. The IRS' position has been that the security of taxpayer information is paramount and that electronic communication is not secure enough for IRS purposes.

Apparently there has been a breakthrough. The IRS, early in 2012, will begin a pilot encryption program intended to enable taxpayers and practitioners to communicate with the Service through secure e-mail, an IRS electronic services official said May 5. It is still unclear where or in which IRS office or division the pilot program will be tested, but electronic communication with the IRS will soon become a reality. Let’s keep our fingers crossed.

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