Dec. 7, 2005
"When I first raised concerns about the privacy issues concerning the outsourcing of tax preparation services back in February 2004, Commissioner Everson indicated that the IRS shared my concern about these practices and was committed to protecting taxpayers from having their confidential financial information compromised. Today, the IRS is taking an important step to fulfill that commitment by proposing regulations that would require the taxpayer's affirmative consent to be obtained before any tax preparer could outsource information to a foreign entity. This requirement should help ensure that taxpayers retain control over who gets access to sensitive personal information about their finances, since consumers are unlikely to agree to have their tax returns sent to countries with weak privacy protections. I commend Commissioner Everson for taking my concerns about this matter seriously and for ensuring that the IRS takes the lead in protecting taxpayer's privacy rights."