Thousands of US taxpayers may have had their details leaked by the IRS

Data Breach
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The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has revealed it inadvertently exposed the data of approximately 120,000 US taxpayers. 

The agency says that all of the offending information has now been removed from its website, and it will send notifications to all those impacted within the coming weeks.

The leak impacted users of a specific type of business tax return, Form 990-T, used by tax-exempt entities such as charities and retirement accounts, to pay income tax on income that is generated from investments or unrelated to their primary purpose. 

What was revealed?

The leak included names, contact information, and financial information about income within the impacted accounts, according to the agency's statement, however, it reportedly didn't contain Social Security numbers, complete individual income information, detailed financial account data, or other "sensitive information that could impact a taxpayer’s credit".

This isn't the first time the IRS has struggled with data protection issues.

Investigative journalism organization ProPublica published IRS data relating to some of the wealthiest individuals in the US such as Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk, and the source of the leak is as of yet unknown.

However, the agency's IT systems and tax software could soon be in for a huge improvement.

In August 2022, US President Joe Biden signed off an additional $80 billion of funding for the IRS, part of which was earmarked to help overhaul its IT systems and to hire experienced new technology specialists.

But it's not just the IRS that has leaked data in recent months, it seems all types of organizations, big and small are vulnerable to data leaks. 

The data of over 2.5 million individuals who have taken out student loans with either the Oklahoma Student Loan Authority (OSLA) or EdFinancial has been exposed in a data breach as a result of a third-party IT provider becoming compromised.

Will McCurdy has been writing about technology for over five years. He has a wide range of specialities including cybersecurity, fintech, cryptocurrencies, blockchain, cloud computing, payments, artificial intelligence, retail technology, and venture capital investment. He has previously written for AltFi, FStech, Retail Systems, and National Technology News and is an experienced podcast and webinar host, as well as an avid long-form feature writer.