May 022011
 
 May 2, 2011  Breaches, Court

How refreshing – a tax preparer that “gets it.”  Rebecca Powell reports:

An H&R Block tax franchise in Loveland and seven of its clients have filed a complaint in district court, saying the tax preparation company is trying to require it to use tax software that allows customers’ information to be shared across the company.

Linda Wild, owner of Advantage Tax Solutions, 383 W. 37th St., Loveland, said the company informed her a year ago she was in breach of contract because she didn’t use tax preparation software that Wild contends she is not contractually obligated to use.

[…]

“The problem with their software that I was concerned about is it takes the returns and stores them in one database,” Wild said, allowing all H&R Block agents, employees, affiliates and their employees to access her customers’ information.

Using the software “would not only violate IRS code restricting tax preparers from sharing tax return information without client permission, resulting in potential criminal penalties for her and her staff, but it violates her own ethical practices, as well,” she stated a news release.

Read more on Coloradoan.com.

If you’ve used H&R Block, you might want to ask them whether your data are now in a central database that anyone can access.  The firm wouldn’t comment on the matter due to the litigation, but maybe if enough customers started complaining about unnecessary privacy and data security risks, a light bulb will go off over their corporate heads.

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