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IRS finds software virus creating PINs for e-file system

By Dmitry Rashnitsov   |   Feb. 10, 2016 at 2:47 PM

WASHINGTON, Feb. 10 (UPI) -- The Internal Revenue Service announced it stopped an attack on its PIN creation system that taxpayers use to file returns online.

IRS analysts detected a virus bot software program that used 101,000 valid Social Security numbers to create 464,000 unauthorized personal identification numbers. PINs are created by individual taxpayers when they file their returns through the e-file system.

The agency said the attack occurred in January. Officials do not believe that any personal information was stolen and said it was not related to a shutdown of the e-file system earlier this month, which was deemed a "hardware failure."

An IRS data breach last year exposed personal information for more than 100,000 taxpayers.

Other federal agencies -- the Office of Personnel Management, Justice, Homeland Security, Health & Human Services and Interior -- have publicly acknowledged breaches in their computer applications since 2014 that exposed information on government employees.

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