The UK is at risk of a massive security breach that could see bank account details and national insurance numbers leaked because of the government’s failure to upgrade Whitehall’s ageing computer system, The Independent can reveal.
HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) has sounded the alarm over its “old and ageing IT systems”, sparking warnings from experts that hackers could steal taxpayers’ sensitive data or leave the UK open to the threat of Russian and Chinese hackers.
The risk to the UK’s entire taxation system came as parliament’s Treasury committee prepares to grill HMRC chiefs and board members over the issue, as well as other topics, today.
“This risk is red due to continued reliance on old and ageing IT systems with an increased risk of inability to meet operational needs,” the accounts, signed off by HMRC boss Jim Harra state.
The chair of parliament’s Treasury committee, Conservative MP Harriett Baldwin, said the warning was “concerning” and that she would be demanding answers from HMRC officials.
She told The Independent:
“It is concerning that our taxation systems, which support our key public services, could potentially be harmed permanently because of out-of-date IT equipment.
I am sure the committee will seek answers on this issue during our regular scrutiny sessions with HMRC.”
By the time HMRC even begins to try to sort this out, the hack will have already occurred!Tax does have to be taxing.
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