South Carolina’s Department of Revenue has been hacked. It has been reported that the hacker had access to 3.6 million social security numbers and 387,000 credit/debit card numbers and/or bank account numbers with the associated bank routing numbers.
For years, I have warned my clients:
1. Do not give banking information on your tax return.
Sure, you will get your refund faster but you are also telling some taxing authority where you keep your money, which makes it much easier for them to grab it back.
2. Do not file electronically. And now we have proof as to the dangers involved. Ostensibly, we have been told that the reason to have us file electronically is to cut the number of personnel required by the taxing authority and to save the taxpayers money. But when I wrote to the NYS Commissioner of Taxation and Finance and asked how many people were laid off and how much money was saved, I got the run-a-round and referrals to other divisions of the state.
Imagine – the head of the division does not know the answer, or cannot get it. Bureaucratic incompetence personified.
Howard Lipset, CPA
Progressive Management, Inc.