IRS wants implement face scanner with tax account, which is access through your face. If next time you try to log in to the Internal Revenue Service’s website you’ll be urged to use facial-recognition software to verify you are who you say you are.
Millions of Americans will soon have to scan their faces to access their Internal Revenue Service tax accounts, one of the government’s biggest expansions yet of facial recognition software into people’s everyday lives.
Taxpayers will still be able to file their returns the old-fashioned way. But by this summer, anyone wanting to access their records including details about child tax credits, payment plans or tax transcripts – on the IRS website will be required to record a video of their face with their computer or smartphone and send it to the private contractor ID.me to confirm their identity.
The verification process includes taking a picture of a photo ID, like a driver’s license or passport, and then taking a video selfie with a smartphone or computer so software can compare the two. It’s part of a partnership the IRS has with ID.me, a fast-growing company that uses facial recognition software as part of its identity-verification process.
About 70 million Americans who have filed for unemployment insurance, pandemic assistance grants, child tax credit payments or other services have already been scanned by the McLean, Va.-based company, which says its client list includes 540 companies; 30 states, including California, Florida, New York and Texas; and 10 federal agencies, including Social Security, Labor and Veterans Affairs.
“I think any plan that inserts a private intermediary into the system for accessing critical information or obtaining benefits from a government agency warrants a lot of scrutiny,” said John Davisson, director of litigation and senior counsel at the Electronic Privacy Information Center, or EPIC.
The IRS pointed out that it’s not necessary to have an online account with the IRS at all. The agency said it”emphasizes taxpayers can pay or file their taxes without submitting a selfie or other information to a third-party identity verification company.”