Forwarded from: Jay D. Dyson <jdysonat_private> -----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE----- Courtesy of Rick Forno. (And we're supposed to feel safe...I wonder how many of those IRS systems had taxpayer's personal info on them? I also have to ask: why does the IRS need guns while the government goes out of its way to disarm everyday citizens?) 01/08/2002 - Updated 03:02 PM ET More than 2,300 IRS computers missing WASHINGTON (AP) ‹ The Internal Revenue Service, which holds taxpayers strictly liable for accurate tax returns, is working to account for more than 2,300 computers that have gone missing over the past three years. A recent Treasury Department audit was unable to determine whether the laptops and other small computers were lost, stolen or simply not properly documented. The IRS is reasonably sure that none contained sensitive taxpayer data or could provide a way for hackers to break into the tax agency's secure main computers. IRS officials said Tuesday they are locating the computers, most of which are older than three years and would normally be replaced anyway. Toni Zimmerman, IRS chief of information technology services, said some were probably stolen or lost but that most were misplaced through bookkeeping errors. "Over the course of events, they were coded wrong in the system," Zimmerman said. Still, a senior senator suggested that Congress require concrete improvements before approving more money for a long-term IRS computer systems upgrade. "An agency that requires taxpayers to show every receipt can't find 2,300 computers," said Sen. Charles Grassley of Iowa, ranking Republican on the Senate Finance Committee. "The IRS wouldn't accept from a taxpayer the nonanswer it has given." In a letter dated Monday, Grassley asked Mitch Daniels, head of the White House Office of Management and Budget, to consider placing a hold on the IRS budget until the situation gets better. The IRS budget for fiscal 2002 is $9.5 billion, and Congress has approved over $391 million through 2004 for the computer modernization project. The IRS got a positive opinion on its inventory controls last year from the congressional General Accounting Office and is determined to get better yet, Zimmerman said. "We want to show that we are fiscally responsible and taxpayers should feel confident with our processes," she said. The missing computers were uncovered by a Treasury inspector general during an audit late last year that also found six unaccounted-for IRS firearms and hundreds of lost investigative items such as badges and communications gear. All told, auditors could not account for 2,332 laptops, microcomputers and microservers covering the period between October 1998 and Sept. 30, 2001. The IRS had 163,000 computers total as of September. IRS officials said they are working on a new system allowing the agency to discern between computers that are lost, stolen or damaged and improve its ability to investigate incidents of missing property. Of the six missing guns, one was lost in an ocean boating accident and five were stolen from vehicles. Fifty communications devices, 40 identification badges and 15 pieces of electronic surveillance gear were also reported missing, which auditors said "could compromise the public's safety or ongoing investigations." -----BEGIN PGP SIGNATURE----- Version: 2.6.2 Comment: See http://www.treachery.net/~jdyson/ for current keys. iQCVAwUBPDyxWLlDRyqRQ2a9AQEg8QP/dvYd3tVeVkLdgTTPTFV/b8/xoijOpWxa BQCv083aWzzICiEzKBZINbopAm+tk4qEqaPH2bGJM2Ps6YY5W+6gMJvcXoq8csK0 7O7g9i8LhQYhtwhrYCbaDLtHFuFuo4DLi+lY38aOEeo2XQL4bOXN2MLsuz2Xidxo D9Sh3IQm9NY= =UwG3 -----END PGP SIGNATURE----- - ISN is currently hosted by Attrition.org To unsubscribe email majordomoat_private with 'unsubscribe isn' in the BODY of the mail.
This archive was generated by hypermail 2b30 : Thu Jan 10 2002 - 10:03:55 PST