With all the recent calls for greater FTC regulation of consumer data generally, it's interesting that there has been very little commentary about the need for greater regulation of taxpayer data. However, the disclosure of a second data breach since the first of the year affecting a major tax preparation software company suggests that consumers require additional oversight with respect to the protection of their personal financial and tax payment data.
The latest data breach has affected some 8,800 customers of TaxSlayer. The previous data breach affected some 9450 customers of a competitor, TaxAct.
Where is the outcry over this issue? Shouldn't privacy advocates be advocating for customers on this particular issue?
I would argue that personal financial and taxpayer data should be treated with the same level of care attributed to personal health information. But for some reason, that is not what is happening in this country.
Privacy regulation advocates need to redirect their attention to this issue. This is one area where we clearly need further government oversight, including over its own management of taxpayer personal financial and taxpayer data.
The Marketwatch story on the data breach is posted below: