Equifax has an epic failure in ID Fraud protection, then gets awarded a contract to provide a similar service to the IRS
Equifax, IRS, Orrin Hatch, Senate Finance Committee, Ron Widen, ID Fraud, ID Fraud Protection, No-Bid Contract
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If you’re the IRS and you’re looking to hire a private org to assure that taxpayer identities are verified who are you gonna call? Well, if you’re the IRS, you’re gonna go ahead and award Equifax the contract. If you’re the IRS, you’re gonna award Equifax the contract through a no-bid process. If you’re the IRS, you’re gonna pay Equifax $7.25 million to do the job.
If you’re the IRS, you’re going to ignore the fact that Equifax just experienced one the largest breaches of security ever, when it exposed over 145 million Americans to potentials for…wait for it….being victims of ID fraud, the very thing the IRS has hired them to prevent. That’s right, if you’re the IRS, and you have friends at Equifax, you hire the company that just exposed almost half of all Americans to identity fraud risk.
That’s you’re IRS, folks, awarding no-bid contracts to singularly discredited companies to do a job they just got done failing at doing, and failing at levels of historic proportions. By the way, I was one of those 145 million Americans, as was my wife.
The contract, as announced by the IRS, is referred to a “sole source order.” That means there was no other competition. By IRS’ superior standards of discernment, the only company that singularly failed, at historic proportions, to do the work the IRS needed done is the ONLY company it deemed could do the job in the first place.
Senate Finance Chairman Orrin Hatch is quoted in Politico as saying, “In the wake of one of the most massive data breaches in a decade, it’s irresponsible for the IRS to turn over millions in taxpayer dollars to a company that has yet to offer a succinct answer on how at least 145 million Americans had personally identifiable information exposed.”
His counterpart, the ranking member of the Finance Committee, Senator Ron Widen is quoted in the same Politico article as saying, “The Finance Committee will be looking into why Equifax was the only company to apply for and be rewarded with this. I will continue to take every measure possible to prevent taxpayer data from being compromised as this arrangement moves forward.”
Bipartisan outrage, nice. But I’m willing to bet that what you will see is some red-faced, ham-fisted stompy-stomps for a few days then, after another round of outrage porn has wafted through the sheeples’ Facebook feeds and Twitter streams, nothing will be done and Equifax will do the work it was contracted to do, putting, perhaps, ALL Americans at risk of being exposed to fraudsters.
Everyone thank the IRS for putting everyone else at risk who wasn’t put at risk by the first round of bumbling from Equifax. THANKS IRS!
They heard your thanks and returned that thanks with this statement as a reward to your heartfelt cry. They said, “Following an internal review and an on-site visit with Equifax, the IRS believes the service Equifax provided does not pose a risk to IRS data or systems. At this time, we have seen no indications of tax fraud related to the Equifax breach, but we will continue to closely monitor the situation.”
Let me de-gov that last statement for you:
Crap, you guys noticed that. Damn. Let me think. Hold on. Crap. This really sucks. Ok, here goes, we investigated ourselves and found we did nothing wrong. Also, listen, some of the folks in the IRS are like really, really close to some of the folks in Equifax and man, man it would suck to drop them. So, we’re not gonna do that, unless you guys keep making a big fuss about this. But hey, we get it Senate dudes, you have to throw your peeps some red meat and act outraged. Just wait a few weeks and everyone will be talking about Harambe II.
There, that’s what they really meant. The question is this, are they right? Probably.