Latest in Breach

Image credit:

Thieves steal tax data for 100,000 from an IRS website

97 Shares
Share
Tweet
Share
Save

Sponsored Links

You might need to keep a closer eye than usual on your tax-related info. The Internal Revenue Service is warning that intruders stole tax data for 100,000 people between February and May by taking advantage of a flaw in the agency's transcript website. The evildoers successfully circumvented a security check that asks for static info like your Social Security number and tax filing status. The IRS is temporarily shutting down transcripts and says that its main servers are safe, but this could lead to the culprits filing for bogus tax refunds and getting victims in trouble.

The kicker? Security researchers have known about vulnerabilities in the transcript service for a while. It's not hard to bypass those identity checks if you're willing to find stolen personal information on the black market, and it's frequently possible to guess the right answers using educated guesses or number generators. Frankly, it's surprising that a breach on this scale didn't happen sooner -- the IRS will likely need to implement passwords or other changeable safeguards to prevent crooks from simply walking in the front door.

[Image credit: Moment Editorial/Getty Images]

All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Comment
Comments
Share
97 Shares
Share
Tweet
Share
Save

Popular on Engadget

The 2019 Engadget Holiday Gift Guide

The 2019 Engadget Holiday Gift Guide

View
'Fortnite' DirectX 12 update boosts performance on high-end PCs

'Fortnite' DirectX 12 update boosts performance on high-end PCs

View
Check out the trailer for the final episode of Darth Vader's VR saga

Check out the trailer for the final episode of Darth Vader's VR saga

View
Karma's latest supercar concept boasts neck-snapping power

Karma's latest supercar concept boasts neck-snapping power

View
Washington, DC sues DoorDash for allegedly misleading users about tips

Washington, DC sues DoorDash for allegedly misleading users about tips

View

From around the web

Page 1Page 1ear iconeye iconFill 23text filevr