The IRS is not always following its policies regarding collection of ID cards from contractor employees no longer on assignment there, an IG audit has found, raising concerns about unauthorized access to agency facilities, computer systems and taxpayer information.
A report said that over 12 months ending in March 2016, more than 1,700 contractor employees separated from the IRS, of which more than 600 had been issued Smart ID cards. However, the agency could document the return of cards from only 17 of 113 in the audit’s random sample, because IRS employees did not always document serial numbers for the return of cards.
Auditors could not determine what became of the rest, although it said other records showed that 79 of them had not been used to access IRS facilities or systems after their holder’s separation date and that “for those who did, IRS officials were able to provide reasonable explanations for the access.”
IRS management agreed to develop a process to provide reasonable assurance that Smart ID card serial numbers are documented when contractor employees separate, and perform follow-up work on separated contractor employees.