EPIC and a coalition of privacy and consumer rights group today sent a letter to Senators Ron Wyden and Mike Crapo of the Senate Finance Committee regarding a proposal under consideration in the budget reconciliation bill to expand the mandatory reporting regime for private financial information in the United States. The proposal would require peer-to-peer payment apps and other similar services such as Square Cash and Venmo to collect Taxpayer Identification Numbers (“TINs”) for virtually all payee accounts in order to comply with new reporting obligations. Because most individuals do not hold a separate TIN from their Social Security Number, unlike businesses, this means that these private entities will be collecting SSNs of millions of Americans. The groups urged the Senators to reject the Treasury Department’s proposal and instead explore ways to improve tax compliance that do not put Americans’ SSNs at risk. "At minimum, the expanded reporting requirement should be scaled back to apply only to business accounts or individual accounts with a high de minimus threshold, adjusted for inflation over time," the groups said. "Peer to Peer payment apps and other similar services that currently do not collect TINs should not be required to do so under the new reporting requirements."
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