The size and scope of tax fraud in the United States is so expansive that it is downright hard to believe how much money the government loses to these fraudsters each year. With the amount of oversight by both the IRS and tax professionals, the fact that these tax scams have cost the American public $5.8 billion in 2013 alone is shocking. As a result, the Senate has been calling for additional oversight to prevent similar losses to continue unabated, especially since the fraudsters are typically a part of organized crime syndicates, meaning that it may very well be the case that the US government is unknowingly funding the criminal activity it works so diligently to prevent.
Further complicating this issue is the fact that, according to Ian Andrews, tax fraud is being committed through the use of stolen tax records. The aforementioned crime syndicates have been able to successfully steal the tax records of law-abiding citizens from the IRS website, using the information gained there to commit their lucrative acts of fraud. While politicians have excoriated the IRS for allowing this sort of breach to occur under its watch, the fact remains that it is the responsibility of government to not only protect the personal information of its citizens, but to also ensure that collected taxes are used for the public good and not distributed to criminals.
As noted by Ian Andrews, tax law changes are coming and they ought to be coming soon. The changes that have been recommended include increased user verification to ensure that fraud is prevented from occurring again in the future, and the IRS -– along with a number of tax software companies –- are apparently discussing additional methods to further protect against the type of fraud that has proven quite costly to American taxpayers.
Though changes are indeed being instituted, Ian Andrews Vivier has expressed a certain level of disbelief that the government could allow such a costly security breach to occur. A loss of $5.8 billion is certainly not an insignificant sum to even the wealthiest of nations, and the fact that such a loss occurred under the watch of one of the strictest government organizations is simply baffling. That the problem is being addressed in short order is certainly a positive development, but there is no reason that this act of fraud should not have been uncovered before $5.8 billion was lost.