IRS Believes 'Significant' Number of Victims Compromised Before Equifax Hack

monkeymagick

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Not to lessen the impact of the recent Equifax hack, the IRS estimates that more than 100 million Americans already had their personal info stolen before the security breach. The IRS commissioner suggests that Americans should already expect their info to be out there and taxpayers should "act accordingly."

The IRS touted its data security efforts ahead of the 2018 tax filing season on Tuesday during a briefing on the agency's Security Summit, a joint effort with state tax agencies and the private sector launched in 2015.

The tax collection agency boasts about putting extra security measures since 2015. Of course, the agency was breached in 2015 with thieves retrieving information on over 700,000 accounts, more than what was originally speculated.

On Tuesday, Koskinen touted the "tremendous progress" of the initiative to guard against tax-related identity theft, disclosing that the agency has witnessed the number of identity theft-related tax returns decline by two-thirds in two years. [/I]
 

Riptide_NVN

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We froze our credit reports. At this point I think we'll be leaving them frozen unless we genuinely need a loan or a check for an apartment/lease. I have a great set of credit cards I use so no need for more there any time soon.
 

Cyraxx

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taxpayers should "act accordingly"? Have you gone full retard you incompetent fool? If anyone needs to ac t accordingly, it's the office in which you can expect will be sent falsified information - not us the taxpayers that can do absolutely nothing.
 

ProfessorUtopia

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taxpayers should "act accordingly"? Have you gone full retard you incompetent fool? If anyone needs to ac t accordingly, it's the office in which you can expect will be sent falsified information - not us the taxpayers that can do absolutely nothing.

While I appreciate your sentiment, taxpayers are not entirely helpless: Most can take (more) deductions, instead of making an interest-free loan to the government with every paycheck.

No tax return to be received -> No tax return to be stolen

Obviously, this is just a stop-gap measure until we can abolish the IRS and personal income tax. /pipedream
 

Iching

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While I appreciate your sentiment, taxpayers are not entirely helpless: Most can take (more) deductions, instead of making an interest-free loan to the government with every paycheck.

No tax return to be received -> No tax return to be stolen

Obviously, this is just a stop-gap measure until we can abolish the IRS and personal income tax. /pipedream

I always have to pay to the government when taxes are due. I think people are deluding themselves by overpaying and then, oh look, the government is giving us some money back.
 

Snowdensjacket

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It's great. At my age now my retarded old friends go off about how they are going to take from the rich. Lol you morons. The truly rich don't pay taxes. You aren't taking from them. You are taking from me. You are just their shock troops.

And oh my. All us middle people? Now the system is breaking down? They can't keep us in our box?

Boo hoo
 

Spidey329

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We froze our credit reports. At this point I think we'll be leaving them frozen unless we genuinely need a loan or a check for an apartment/lease. I have a great set of credit cards I use so no need for more there any time soon.

What erks me is that they charge to freeze/unfreeze your credit reports. That really needs to be addressed.
 

pek

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I hate to burst some conspiracy bubbles, but the "break-in in 2015" the irs did NOT expose any taxpayer data, the data that is out there on ALL of us was aggregated and used to file fraudulent returns to get refunds. No taxpayer data was lost/exposed/ex-filtrated from inside the irs. While I like the irs no more that the next guy, let's try to keep the facts straight.
 

Romale23

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I hate to burst some conspiracy bubbles, but the "break-in in 2015" the irs did NOT expose any taxpayer data, the data that is out there on ALL of us was aggregated and used to file fraudulent returns to get refunds. No taxpayer data was lost/exposed/ex-filtrated from inside the irs. While I like the irs no more that the next guy, let's try to keep the facts straight.

That depends on which breach your referring to. The big one was this one:
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news...et-transcript-service/?utm_term=.d91e768acd31
 

Shotglass01

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While I appreciate your sentiment, taxpayers are not entirely helpless: Most can take (more) deductions, instead of making an interest-free loan to the government with every paycheck.

No tax return to be received -> No tax return to be stolen

I always have to pay to the government when taxes are due. I think people are deluding themselves by overpaying and then, oh look, the government is giving us some money back.

+1 I can't fathom why people think getting a refund at the end of filing is a great thing. And, we can't really protect ourselves anymore. I fully expect my credit, at some point, to be trashed because of ID theft. And, it'll keep happening. And, there's not much I can do about it.
 

lcpiper

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While I appreciate your sentiment, taxpayers are not entirely helpless: Most can take (more) deductions, instead of making an interest-free loan to the government with every paycheck.

No tax return to be received -> No tax return to be stolen

Obviously, this is just a stop-gap measure until we can abolish the IRS and personal income tax. /pipedream

It is pleasing to note that I am not alone in recognizing that receiving a refund is not generally a good thing, and a person shouldn't be doing it on purpose. If one must pay income tax, they are better served to pay as little as is necessary and keep what is theirs for as long as possible, without incurring fines, penalties, etc.
 

lcpiper

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+1 I can't fathom why people think getting a refund at the end of filing is a great thing. And, we can't really protect ourselves anymore. I fully expect my credit, at some point, to be trashed because of ID theft. And, it'll keep happening. And, there's not much I can do about it.


If your doing it right, you don't really need good credit. Just saying.
 

Shotglass01

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If your doing it right, you don't really need good credit. Just saying.

Yep, known. Although it can just be easier if you've already got it. You still can rack better discounts on insurance, etc. Plus, the way employers are looking at it now too which I think is shit considering credit score has nothing to do with a persons ability to work.
 

xorbe

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I don't have to worry about it, because I already know that I have Russian people calling my cc companies trying to add themselves to my cards. Had a long chat with one of the major card's security departments, and I was told interesting things. Anyway what happens is that you set up a "telephone only" password that should only be used when you call the number on your card. Never give the password if someone calls you, they are trying to middle-man you.
 

lcpiper

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Yep, known. Although it can just be easier if you've already got it. You still can rack better discounts on insurance, etc. Plus, the way employers are looking at it now too which I think is shit considering credit score has nothing to do with a persons ability to work.

Actually, I think from a security standpoint, they might use it for security investigations these days. Financial problems are considered a personal weak point for people in positions of trust. In short, people who are in money trouble are easier to bribe is the thinking.

On the one hand, I have no doubt that there are some strong willed men and women who are poor or owe and can't be bribed like this. But on the other hand, when it comes to setting up rules to go by, I think they have to go with the odds.
 
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drescherjm

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I fully expect that my name, SSN, home and work addresses, credit card numbers ... have already been compromised at least once probably more.
 

Shotglass01

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Actually, I think from a security standpoint, they might use it for security investigations these days. Financial problems are considered a personal weak point for people in positions of trust. In short, people who are in money trouble are easier to bribe is the thinking.

On the one hand, I have no doubt that their are some strong willed men and women who are poor or owe and can't be bribed like this. But on the other hand, when it comes to setting up rules to go by, I think they have to go with the odds.

Fact is, you have no idea why someone's credit is shit. Could be ID theft, could be sitting pretty until they have a cancer diagnosis. Nobody knows why someone owes unless they tell you.
 

lcpiper

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Fact is, you have no idea why someone's credit is shit. Could be ID theft, could be sitting pretty until they have a cancer diagnosis. Nobody knows why someone owes unless they tell you.

Fact is, every swinging dick with a Government Security Clearance has their financial records audited by DIS during initial and periodic investigations and if those who have been granted access to classified information fail to report financial troubles to their security office they are subject to revocation of said security clearance.

As long as we are talking about facts ..........
 

Shotglass01

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Fact is, every swinging dick with a Government Security Clearance has their financial records audited by DIS during initial and periodic investigations and if those who have been granted access to classified information fail to report financial troubles to their security office they are subject to revocation of said security clearance.

As long as we are talking about facts ..........

Dude, drop it. You're in a world most of the population isn't. As I said, unless they tell you, nobody would know why their credit score is shit. And, no matter security clearance or bribery, I still think it's a crap benchmark to measure someone on job performance. I don't know what Snowden's score was, but bribery had nothing to do with it, thus neither did his credit score. I'm sure you can drag up plenty of examples of folks being bribed, but I think it's the person and not the credit score.
 

tonyquart

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I don't have to worry about it, because I already know that I have Russian people calling my cc companies trying to add themselves to my cards. Had a long chat with one of the major card's security departments, and I was told interesting things. Anyway what happens is that you set up a "telephone only" password that should only be used when you call the number on your card. Never give the password if someone calls you, they are trying to middle-man you.

Yes. Telephone calls maybe the easiest way for scammers to trick people related to this identity theft. I personally still get regular calls which (probably) come from scammers. The trick always different. I got 3 calls from 3235924083 in one day. I didn't answer all of those calls. I Googled the number and found people have reported this number as scam at sites like http://www.whycall.me/3235924083.html. I think we should just be aware of these kind of calls.
 

lcpiper

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Dude, drop it. You're in a world most of the population isn't. As I said, unless they tell you, nobody would know why their credit score is shit. And, no matter security clearance or bribery, I still think it's a crap benchmark to measure someone on job performance. I don't know what Snowden's score was, but bribery had nothing to do with it, thus neither did his credit score. I'm sure you can drag up plenty of examples of folks being bribed, but I think it's the person and not the credit score.

Oh no way, you said "Nobody knows why someone owes unless they tell you." And I am telling you that someone often does know. Now you seem to think I am in some select tiny minority and you would again be wrong.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) calculates the number of citizens in the Civilian Labor Force (persons classified as Employed or Unemployed) at 157,833,000 (49% of the U.S. population)
https://jobenomicsblog.com/2016-state-of-the-u-s-labor-force/

About 5.1 million people — or more than 1.5 percent of the population — held security clearances last year, up from 4.9 million people with clearances the year before.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news...-population-of-norway/?utm_term=.cd15b9a76deb

If the security-cleared population were its own country, it would be bigger than Norway.

As of 1 January 2016, out of a total U.S. population of 322,810,000, there are 70,874,000 citizens that cannot work (22% of the population consisting mainly of children, caretakers, retired, disabled, institutionalized and active duty members of the armed forces) and 251,936,000 citizens in the Civilian Noninstitutional Population (78% of the population consisting of all persons in the Civilian Labor Force and Not-in-Labor-Force categories that are 16 years of age and older and not inmates of mental or penal institutions or military active duty).

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) calculates the number of citizens in the Civilian Labor Force (persons classified as Employed or Unemployed) at 157,833,000 (49% of the U.S. population) and in the Not-in-Labor-Force citizens at 94,610,000 (29% of the population).

So out of almost 323 million people, 71 million can't work, this number includes the Active Duty Military who are not considered as in the job market for employment statistics.

Then there is 158 million who are either employed or unemployed. Now I don't like saying that if someone isn't working then they don't count, but in this instance and for this purpose I'll go there.
The projected active duty end strength in the armed forces for fiscal year 2017 was 1,281,900 people
Now I know the labor statistics don't include the military, but for this purpose I think we need to pad the numbers cause they apply. 158 million workers + 1.3 million AD military = 159.3 people for whom a credit score really matters, cause they are working and earning an income and could have a security clearance. If my math is right, 3.2% of US workers for whom a credit score might be important, not only have their financial records investigated as a consequence of their employment, but are also required by law to inform their security officers if they are having money troubles, as in credit/debt problems.

Now you may think that 3.2 percent of the working US population is a small number, but it's almost a match for the unemployment rate which is currently around 4.4%, but that rate, unlike the percentage of cleared employees, doesn't include the US Active Duty people so you can drop it a little.

Now perhaps you feel that the number of unemployed is so small a number it doesn't count in the same way you seem to think that the number of people who hold a clearance doesn't matter. But I am pretty sure that if you were a member of either group, it would matter to you.

Actually, out of 233 nations, 119 have populations greater than 5.1 million. The number of cleared workers is greater than the population of 114 countries, each having fewer people.

Norway Dude, Norway.
 

Shotglass01

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<Snip>

Still talking Linux numbers. Look it doesn't matter anyway. I said I don't believe it should be a metric at all in gauging anyone including security clearances. It's a bullshit metric someone came up with as a data point that says "Holly shit, credit score is a measure of someone's responsibility!" And, it should die. And once more, unless I say why my credit score is crap, nobody would know the real reason without having to do more digging than usual. Even my applying for a montage, the credit reports would only show I missed a payment or were late. It wound't disclose any reasons behind those reports. Fight if you want, I'm not changing my stance on this.
 

lcpiper

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<Snip>

Still talking Linux numbers. Look it doesn't matter anyway. I said I don't believe it should be a metric at all in gauging anyone including security clearances. It's a bullshit metric someone came up with as a data point that says "Holly shit, credit score is a measure of someone's responsibility!" And, it should die. And once more, unless I say why my credit score is crap, nobody would know the real reason without having to do more digging than usual. Even my applying for a montage, the credit reports would only show I missed a payment or were late. It wound't disclose any reasons behind those reports. Fight if you want, I'm not changing my stance on this.

I won't challenge your opinion of the validity of the credit score. I never cared much about it myself, mostly cause it doesn't matter much to me.
All that did matter was the absolute quality of your statement, you said "Nobody knows ..." and frankly, it chaps my ass that after Snowden's bullshit, somebody is all inside mine and over 5 million other people's and all the snowflakes who cried and whined over the entire thing were completely silent about this while the people who are now subjected to it are in a difficult position when it comes to making complaints about it. It's like, I looked away and all the righteous people just disappeared, I swear they were all standing here just a moment ago.

I wonder how no one can see the irony in it, that it was so bad that meta-data is being collected on over-seas phone calls, calls that used to be recorded entirely, but when the government selects 5 million citizens and says "we're just going to crawl right up your ass and squat, so watch what you eat, and I don't want to hear any complaining or we'll just pull that clearance and you can go work for someone else", nobody sees anything wrong with that.
 
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