Is Your Accountant Sending Your Information Offshore?

Is your accountant or tax preparer sending your personally identifiable information (PII) offshore? Possibly.
Here is the second part of the first article, “(Mis)Using Social Security Numbers in Business,” within my August issue of IT Compliance in Realtime Journal, which discusses the use of SSNs (get the nicest version of the full journal here)…

Sharing SSNs with Others
A big information security, privacy, and compliance issue within all organizations is information sharing. Certainly it is important to know with whom your organization shares SSNs. Too many organizations share far too much information about their employees and customers with third parties.
It is worth noting that on July 2, 2008, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) published proposed and combined final and temporary rules that allow U.S.-based tax preparers to share taxpayers’ SSNs with offshore tax preparers if adequate data security safeguards are in place and if the taxpayer consents to having their information shared. The rules amend regulations issued in January that prohibited the sharing of SSNs with offshore tax preparation contractors, even if the taxpayer consented to the practice.
The proposed IRS regulations are available at The final and temporary IRS regulations are available at

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