IRS will soon require video selfies for online user identification

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Users who plan to file their taxes or check their tax payment history will soon have to provide full documentation to a third-party company, including photos of utility bills and a video selfie.

Starting this summer, the IRS will require new and existing users to create an ID.me account to file taxes, access tax records, create or view tax records, and more.

ID.me is a Virginia-based identity verification company that was launched in 2010. The company is known for its work in the retail industry, where veterans, students, nurses and first responders register accounts for discounts at various stores.

Now the US government is partnering with ID.me, requiring users to submit government-issued ID, copies of utility statements, and biometrics to the private company. According to Krebs on security, 27 states also use the company’s services to combat identity theft.

The process, which a AppleInsider the staff member had to drop by, can take five to ten minutes if everything goes smoothly. It requires government-issued ID, proof of residency such as utility bills, and a selfie taken on the company’s website using a smartphone or a webcam. computer.

The required selfie is not a photo but rather a video that scans a user’s face multiple times. Unfortunately, we found that the video selfie is not a perfect science.

Even though we were in a fully lit room, the video selfie was deemed too dark. In order to remedy this, we were forced to use a light bulb in a shadeless lamp a few meters from our face.

However, once the video selfie is accepted, the process is almost instantaneous, allowing users to immediately access their IRS.gov profile.

If you must go through the process, we strongly suggest that you make sure you have your ID, copies of utility bills, a very well-lit room, and access to your smartphone for multi-factor verification before you begin. .

Krebs on security had a different experience, which required their employee to be verified through ID.me’s live, in-person verification process. While they were able to get through it relatively quickly, the process is much more likely to take hours.

Again, we strongly suggest that you make sure you have all the documents handy and preferably make sure you start the process when you have free time and well in advance before you need to access your account.

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