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Personal tax account rant!

Farce

How many levels of security are needed to get into this bloody thing?

You use your User ID and Password to get in.

A message comes up to say they are sending me an email to confirm my address - I do so.

It then sends and access code to my phone which I then enter.

Doesn't let me into my account. Wants to verify my identity some more so wants details from passport/P60/payslip which I don't have to hand.

Bloody nightmare! Rant over.

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16th May 2019 16:41

It's good security practice (at least in part)

- most people access their HMRC account infrequently. Confirmation of email is useful to ensure their records are up to date
- code to your phone is the second stage of 2-factor authorisation. Generally considered superior to using a single password

Can't speak to the specific reason for other requirements. But increasingly government records are validated against each other (eg driving licence renewal may be checked against your passport number). So it's reasonable, essential in fact, that records are both secure and verified.

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to paul.benny
16th May 2019 16:56

But it seems obligatory to have a valid passport. Mine lapsed last November and I've had no reason to renew it yet. That meant that I ended up with some other "verification" service which has since been reported as not fit for purpose. That asked me about a bank account that I'd opened "about" 20 years ago. I have two accounts that could fit that - one I thought was a bit more than 20 years, the other a bit less. Obviously I guessed wrong and was simply thrown out with no way to proceed. Utter garbage. There was no way that I could check the opening date of either whilst online. How many of us could?

It might be reasonable that records are both secure and verified, but it's equally reasonable to expect that the verification process actually works.

They are of course happy enough to take my self assessment return and money off me using the information to log in to my online account.

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to Cloudcounter
17th May 2019 10:53

Cloudcounter wrote:

That asked me about a bank account that I'd opened "about" 20 years ago. I have two accounts that could fit that - one I thought was a bit more than 20 years, the other a bit less. Obviously I guessed wrong and was simply thrown out with no way to proceed. Utter garbage. There was no way that I could check the opening date of either whilst online. How many of us could?


I would have though most people, open a new tab, log into online banking and check the date.
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to Dr Gonzo
17th May 2019 12:07

Perhaps they would. In my case online banking is not set up for one of the accounts in question, because the set up process was garbage and not worth it. For the account where it is set up, the system will only go back five years. So I would have though most people doing that would be wasting their time.

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16th May 2019 17:38

Tried and failed to open one some time ago, gave up and just use my agent access.

Curiously a non-SA client (local chap in the village) was due a rebate, and I sorted it for him as a favour. In the rebate letter, instead of sending a cheque (HMRC wouldn't take his bank details on the phone), they were trying to get him to open a personal tax account. They said they would not send a cheque for "at least" 2 months. Fortunately he doesn't need the cash. The chap is over 70 and doesnt have a mobile phone.

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17th May 2019 11:05

The whole balance between security and accessibility has become a farce.

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By CJaneH
17th May 2019 13:24

I first tried to comply and found that if you closed HMRC to access your emails you code was no longer valid. I had to access my emails via my smart phone for the code to work. As a small sole trader my only email is both work and personal.

HMRC want to confirm every time I log in so I just bypass now.

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17th May 2019 13:25

Your photo does look particularly snarly today.

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