Feb 09, 2022

IRS Announces Transition Away from Use of Third-party Verification Involving Facial Recognition

In our Beyond the Bottom Line Newsletter dated January 12, 2022, we described the updated identity verification and sign-in process for several IRS online tools. As they say about not liking the weather in the south, just wait a few minutes and it will change. So goes the new IRS identity verification.

Last Friday, the Wall Street Journal published an opinion by The Editorial Board titled Face Time With the IRS. The opinion piece discussed the announcement in November of the partnership with ID.me, a private contractor, to improve the identity verification process with a face scan. The Wall Street Journal noted that this new biometric process was creating a rarity in Washington today – bipartisan blowback on what many opponents of the policy saw as a potential privacy issue. The Wall Street Journal closed its opinion by asserting the IRS should put this process on hold until its implications are better understood.

On Monday, the IRS announced that it will transition away from using ID.me facial recognition to help authenticate people creating new online accounts. The transition will occur over the coming weeks in order to prevent larger disruptions to taxpayers during filing season. During the transition, the IRS will quickly develop and bring online an additional authentication process that does not involve facial recognition. Anticipating those taxpayers looking for any excuse not to file their 1040, the IRS reminded taxpayers that the transition announced today does not interfere with the taxpayer’s ability to file their return or pay taxes owed. During this transition period, the IRS will continue to accept tax filings.

If you have any questions about this or your tax filings, please reach out to your BMSS professional at (833) CPA-BMSS.