Yes Cash App did have a data breach in December of 2021, and yet you are probably only hearing about it now, 4 months later.
And quick question, how many of you used the new Credit Karma, Cash App sign in to do taxes this year? Would you have still done that had you known about the data breach?
According to the US Securities and Exchange Commission this is what happened, per their report.
On April 4, 2022, Block, Inc. (the ‘Company’) announced that it recently determined that a former employee downloaded certain reports of its subsidiary Cash App Investing LLC (‘Cash App Investing’) on December 10, 2021 that contained some U.S. customer information. While this employee had regular access to these reports as part of their past job responsibilities, in this instance these reports were accessed without permission after their employment ended.
Clark.com did a full article on this on April 21st and you can read that in full at: Cash App Data Breach: Why It’s a Big Deal for Your Wallet
Link to the story: https://clark.com/protect-your-identity/cash-app-data-breach/
If I file for an extension, will I automatically get audited? Or does it increase my chances of being audited?
This one falls under urban myth status, and no, your extension is not a trigger for an audit.
Most people have heard this, and many have repeated it as a "fact", but it's not a fact at all. So will you get your taxes in tomorrow for the deadline? Or do you need an extension?
VerifyThis did an article last week on this topic, and you can read through their coverage to see that no, it's not the trigger for an audit. And in fact about 1 out of every 10 people get an extension each year.
And as they say in their story, do the right thing, follow the steps, don't try to be tricky or smarter than and you should be just fine.
Read their in depth look at the topic at: No, filing a tax extension doesn’t increase your risk of being audited
Link to the article: https://www.verifythis.com/article/news/verify/taxes-verify/tax-extension-doesnt-increase-audit-risk/536-81360507-8793-41b0-838c-ce369b8282a1
According to an article last week from Yahoo Money tax season is going well this year, and indeed there are bigger refunds being seen. And it's going well, with the IRS actually ahead of where they were this same time last year.
The average refund this year is $3,352, compared with $2,967 this time last year — a 13% increase.
And remember if you can file electronically, do, because your odds are better for a faster refund, assuming you are getting one.
You can read the article titled Tax season brings bigger tax refunds and 'no unexpected problems' so far in full.
Link to article: https://money.yahoo.com/tax-season-brings-bigger-tax-refunds-201852917.html
There have been several changes to the Earned Income Tax Credits (EITC) this year, and Ivestopedia did a good job of breaking it down for folks. And the good news is that even more people are covered under the expansion.
And this includes people without children. And if you are still legally married, but are fully separated you want to have a look because you could now be treated as unmarried for the EITC.
It's an easy to read breakdown of the highlights of changes, and you can see where your own circumstances may benefit under the expansions.
Link to the article:
This week CNET Money broke down their best picks for filing for free. And while you may have heard about programs from H & R Block or Turbo Tax, you may not have heard about everything available to folks who have an Adjusted Gross Income of $73,000 or less.
They also broke down Volunteer Income Tax Assistance or Tax Counseling for the Elderly options and how to access them in your area, with both a link and a phone number.
The article is headlined Best Free Tax Software 2022: File Your Taxes at No Cost and the also have links to their suggestions.
Link to the article, which also includes a 4:21 minute podcast:
What kind of things do you think might trigger an Audit of your return?
I think it's fair to say no one wants to go through one, but do we know what types of things tend to cause a closer look? Crypto is probably on your list, and it was on the list the Wall Street Journal put out last week too. What about being a W2 employee, working from home, and claiming a workspace; was that on your list?
Read through 10 Red Flags That Could Trigger an IRS Tax Audit in 2022 they addressed this past week.
And remember when in doubt seek the advice of a tax professional.
Link to the article:
In January the IRS had announced that it was going to be using facial recognition for taxpayers to access certain account services, and that it would be in force by this summer.
There was a lot of outcry over the idea, implementation, security and even the sense of it, Yesterday they announced that no, they are not going forward with it at this time.
Here is an article that has a lot more of the details.
One of the things that many people struggle with is filing their taxes. And in fact many people wonder why does it have to be so difficult, especially if the IRS already has all of their information.
Turns out there is an answer for that, and the culprits may surprise you.
Many people get behind on paying their taxes, or even just filing them. Because the process is too hard, or confusing and they don't even start. This then starts a domino effect of problems with their money and even their credit.
Businesses like H & R Block, and Turbo Tax have actively lobbied Congress to not make it easier. In fact they have even promised that "they would make it easier, and affordable, and even free to low income folks" .
In this article from last year, from MSNBC, they break down what has been happening and say "the IRS has had enough of those shenanigans, and it changed the terms of its agreement with the tax preparation companies in December 2019."
And they also point out that "That's all great. But in the few weeks before tax returns are due, Americans will still stress over whether they checked the wrong box and whether that means they owe thousands of dollars."
Here we are at the start of the next tax season, and it's still true that many are frozen from even starting, and are stressed about the process.
Links from article:
And here is a recent articles in the news about just this topic!
https://www.econotimes.com/The-IRS-already-has-all-your-income-tax-data--so-why-do-Americans-still-have-to-file-their-taxes-1626068 By Beverly Moran Professor Emerita of Law, Vanderbilt University for the EconoTimes