TIGTA today publicly released its audit report of the IRS's processing of taxpayer requests for copies of tax returns and transcripts.
TIGTA's audit concluded that the IRS needs to strengthen its controls over taxpayer requests for copies of tax returns and transcripts in order to prevent unauthorized disclosure of taxpayer information. Tax transcripts provide most of the information contained in a tax return. Taxpayers request copies of their tax returns or transcripts for many reasons -- to obtain a loan to start a business, to buy a home, to attend college or to verify income for child support. In addition, third parties such as financial institutions, insurance companies or universities could also submit requests for tax returns or transcripts to the IRS on behalf of taxpayers.