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  #1  
Old 12-05-2013, 09:31 AM
dynalow's Avatar
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Arrow The IRS and the ACA

For those of you who may be interested, the TIGTA (Treas Inspector General for Tax Administration) released its audit report of the IRS' security controls for the administration of the Premium Tax Credit available to taxpayers under the ACA
http://www.treasury.gov/tigta/auditreports/2013reports/201323119fr.pdf


The IRS conducted interagency testing to verify integration, interface, performance, and reliability requirements for major design components of the system. Interagency testing should include validating data formats and transmission, validating software and hardware interoperability, and using manufactured data to invoke user-like work streams in a simulated production environment. Staff in each agency is responsible for repairing defects in their respective systems and keeping the systems operational. The interagency test cases that we analyzed contained user scenarios that were jointly developed by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the IRS.
The test cases we considered were developed to validate the critical business processes for inbound requests from the CMS and outbound responses from the IRS. For example, a test case could require the submission of a single PTC request from the CMS Federal Exchange, ensure that the correct results are generated on the IRS systems, and verify those results are correctly returned and presented at the CMS Federal Exchange.

We observed that the IT Implementation and Testing organization personnel did not consistently follow appropriate test management procedures. Internal Revenue Manual (IRM) 2.6.1 requires that test cases be developed to support requirements testing. Test cases must specify and document the conditions to be tested and validate that system functions meet customer requirements as translated into a documented functional design. Test cases should also include the requirements being tested to ensure that each requirement is properly tested. During our review, the IRS stated that test cases are mapped to requirements in the requirements traceability matrix to ensure traceability. However, we reviewed five interagency test cases provided by the IT Implementation and Testing organization and found that they did not contain all key requirements that must be tested to verify system capabilities.

The IT Implementation and Testing organization staff explained that testing with another Federal agency, including the HHS, involves new processes, so everyone is learning as the work progresses with ACA systems development. Further, they explained that missing requirements were not included in the test cases because of an IRS decision to restrict certain data during the test case development process from the CMS. However, if requirement numbers and descriptions are not included in test cases, traceability between requirements, test cases, and test results may not be accurate or complete. Based on ourreview, we concluded that the IRS has not applied established systems development controls to verify that the HHS Hub and the IRS portal for ACA effectively transfer data13 as needed by the IRS for calculating the maximum APTC.

Recommendation Recommendation 3: The Chief Technology Officer should update test management procedures to include additional controls and processes to document how traceability between requirements, test cases, and test results will be achieved for interagency testing.

Managementís Response: The IRS agreed with this recommendation. The IRS stated that the ACA Strategic Test Management plan will be updated to formally document how traceability between requirements, test cases, and test results are achieved for testing with external entities.
(pp9&10 of the attached pdf).


An article on this report here:
IRS Needs to Improve Security for Obamacare Tax Credits: December 4, 2013

On top of the other problems associated with the troubled rollout of the federal governmentís online health insurance exchange, the Internal Revenue Service is now being urged to strengthen the security for the tax credits it will be providing to help taxpayers afford the cost of the insurance premiums. ..........


Draw your own conclusions.

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  #2  
Old 12-05-2013, 10:07 AM
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It sounds as if our government is working as it should. One branch is checking on the other. Its called a system of Checks and Balances. It is one of the underpinnings of our governmental system.
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  #3  
Old 12-05-2013, 10:39 AM
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Thanks for the post. Just indexing it so I'll read it later.
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  #4  
Old 12-05-2013, 10:44 AM
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The Fox watching the hen house. Wait a minute, that's not fair to Foxes. There MIGHT be a Fox somewhere that we could trust. The chance of that with the government is ZERO.
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  #5  
Old 12-05-2013, 10:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by t walgamuth View Post
It sounds as if our government is working as it should. One branch is checking on the other. Its called a system of Checks and Balances. It is one of the underpinnings of our governmental system.
No argument there T, but the electronic reporting and filing system has an ATM for thieves, sadly.
The Earned Income Credit has long been a feeding ground for thieves.... and their accountants and return preparers
And identity theft? ...Whew, let's not even go there. Staggering losses.

As a point of clarification, the TIGTA and the IRS are both components of the Treasury Dept. Nevertheless, the TIGTA along with the Taxpayer Advocates Office play a very necessary watchdog role on behalf of the citizens. And that is a good thing.
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  #6  
Old 12-05-2013, 11:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dynalow View Post
No argument there T, but the electronic reporting and filing system has an ATM for thieves, sadly.
The Earned Income Credit has long been a feeding ground for thieves.... and their accountants and return preparers
And identity theft? ...Whew, let's not even go there. Staggering losses.

As a point of clarification, the TIGTA and the IRS are both components of the Treasury Dept. Nevertheless, the TIGTA along with the Taxpayer Advocates Office play a very necessary watchdog role on behalf of the citizens. And that is a good thing.
Of course you have proof of the first three lines? ATM for thieves? What is meant by that?

Feeding ground for thieves...you mean people are offered a tax credit and they have actually been using it? That seems like a tax code working as designed.

Identity theft? You of course have examples of this? Somehow the ACA is going to make it very easy to steal identities? Seems like people looking to do such things are unlikely to be stopped in any case.
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[SIGPIC] Diesel loving autocrossing grandpa Architect. 08 Dodge 3/4 ton with Cummins & six speed; I have had about 35 benzes. I have a 39 Studebaker Coupe Express pickup in which I have had installed a 617 turbo and a five speed manual.[SIGPIC]

..I also have a 427 Cobra replica with an aluminum chassis.
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  #7  
Old 12-05-2013, 12:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by t walgamuth View Post
It sounds as if our government is working as it should. One branch is checking on the other. Its called a system of Checks and Balances. It is one of the underpinnings of our governmental system.
This IRS and how it interprets the ACA is NOT part of the system of checks and balances, Tom. Here's a good read for someone interested.
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  #8  
Old 12-05-2013, 12:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by t walgamuth View Post
Of course you have proof of the first three lines? ATM for thieves? What is meant by that?

Feeding ground for thieves...you mean people are offered a tax credit and they have actually been using it? That seems like a tax code working as designed. Yes, and also a tax credit which has been seriously abused form many years.
Identity theft? You of course have examples of this? YES Somehow the ACA is going to make it very easy to steal identities? I didn't say that. Seems like people looking to do such things are unlikely to be stopped in any case. AGREE.
Straight from the US Government

In reply to the first two paragraphs.
The Internal Revenue Service Was Not in Compliance With All Requirements of the Improper Payments Elimination and Recovery Act for Fiscal Year 2012

As to the problem of identity theft, herewith:

THERE ARE BILLIONS OF DOLLARS IN UNDETECTED TAX REFUND FRAUD RESULTING FROM IDENTITY THEFT

Highlights.............


There Are Billions of Dollars in Undetected Tax Refund Fraud Resulting From Identity Theft

On e personal level, I have had one client who's identity was stolen by a fraudulent tax return filed by another. That was for his 2010 return. A supreme PIA. I have to tell you I felt at the time that the IRS' security filters for efiled returns were woefully inadequate.

Draw your own conclusions.
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  #9  
Old 12-05-2013, 01:29 PM
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This relates to the ACA how?
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..I also have a 427 Cobra replica with an aluminum chassis.
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  #10  
Old 12-05-2013, 01:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by t walgamuth View Post
This relates to the ACA how?
Seriously?
It doesn't. Neither did the questions it answered.
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  #11  
Old 12-05-2013, 03:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dynalow View Post
Seriously?
It doesn't. Neither did the questions it answered.
You seem to be blaming the ACA for problems inside the IRS which have been identified in an appropriate manner and are being addressed.
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..I also have a 427 Cobra replica with an aluminum chassis.
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  #12  
Old 12-05-2013, 03:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Air&Road View Post
The Fox watching the hen house. Wait a minute, that's not fair to Foxes. There MIGHT be a Fox somewhere that we could trust. The chance of that with the government is ZERO.
A Fox that you can trust? I know one that is fair and balanced
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  #13  
Old 12-05-2013, 03:46 PM
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A Fox that you can trust? I know one that is fair and balanced
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  #14  
Old 12-05-2013, 11:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by t walgamuth View Post
It sounds as if our government is working as it should. One branch is checking on the other. Its called a system of Checks and Balances. It is one of the underpinnings of our governmental system.
There are no checks and balances by the Government themself. Edward Snowden outing the NSA proved that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MTUpower View Post
This IRS and how it interprets the ACA is NOT part of the system of checks and balances, Tom. Here's a good read for someone interested.
NO three lettered, acronym Gov't agency is under any Gov't self-scrutiny. Nor, are most of them Constitutional when it gets right down to it. In other words, the American ppl did not vote on them. Just because something is the law, does not mean it is Constitutional.

The EPA is one that was pulled out of thin air by a President, as just one example of a very bad and unuseful entity.

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