New IRS Tool
It’s tax season and the Internal Revenue Service is working on a new way to verify and collect information about taxpayers. All IRS accounts could soon demand identification with a “video selfie.” The IRS will use a third-party service called ID.me, an online identity verification service with facial recognition software.
Anyone who wants to use IRS online services, such as paying taxes online or changing a postal address, may need to register through ID.me soon. According to the IRS, all online accounts will be expected to convert to ID.me in summer 2022. How does the identification process work?
ID.me verifies identities by requesting a Social Security number, a selfie, and images of government-issued identification. Then, it runs its facial recognition software on the images and compares the provided information to data from credit card bureaus, financial institutions and other sources.
Many privacy experts and other critics are concerned that a collaboration between the IRS and ID.me could produce a large new pool of private data that may be mined by the police, immigration enforcement, and other agencies.
The IRS is looking into other services, but if the collaboration goes through, it could add millions of new users to the company’s user base of over 60 million. In 27 states, the technology is already being used to access benefits. Does the possible collaboration concern you or do you think it’s an effective way to verify people’s identities?
I am not a financial advisor and my comments should never be taken as financial advice. Investments come with risk, so always do your research and analysis beforehand.