Security & Fraud

TaxSlayer Discloses Data Breach Details

It appears that TaxSlayer may have sustained a bit of a wound itself in the area of customer data security.

On Jan. 29, the tax software preparation company notified about 8,800 individual customers that hackers may have accessed their accounts, reports The Wall Street Journal.

Daniel Eubanks, TaxSlayer's director of compliance, told the outlet that his firm first became aware of the fraudulent activity on Jan. 13, noting that the illegal access in question occurred between between Oct. 10, 2015, and Dec. 21, 2015.

The letter notifying TaxSlayer's affected customers read in part: “[An] unauthorized third party may have obtained access to any information you included in a tax return or draft tax return saved on TaxSlayer, including your name and address, your Social Security number, the Social Security numbers of your dependents and other data contained on your 2014 tax return.”

In the same statement, WSJ shares, TaxSlayer expressed its belief that its own systems were not affected by the breach, rather that "user credentials, stolen from other sources, were then used to misrepresent our customers and therefore access our program.”

TaxSlayer told WSJ that it is one of the top five providers of tax software to individuals that prepare their own returns and that the company provided more than 1 million returns last year.

In responding to the suspected breach, the company further shared with the outlet that it is offering free credit monitoring and $1 million of identity theft insurance to its affected customers. TaxSlayer is advising those customers to change their usernames and passwords for their tax forms, as well as those for other accounts.

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