March 25, 2006

IRS Permits Tax Preparers to Sell Our Data

Jeanne Sahadi:
Would you ever agree to work overtime for free, indefinitely, creating profits for someone else?

I didn't think so.

But that's often what we do when we buy a product or service from companies. That's because they can continue to make money off us by selling whatever personal information we give them in the course of the transaction. Your payback: more junk mail and greater risk of identity theft.

And now it looks very likely that tax preparers will be able to profit off clients in ways having nothing to do with taxes.

Thanks to proposed changes to the IRS' privacy regulation of tax preparers, everyone from H&R Block to your local tax-prep shop may be allowed to sell their clients' tax return information to any third party, including marketers and data brokers.

Mind you, they would need to get your consent, according to the proposed regulations.
Posted by James Zellmer at March 25, 2006 4:39 PM | Subscribe to this site via RSS:
Posted to Electronic Rights | Taxes