IRS Issues Final Rule on Truncated SSNs

July 15, 2019

The IRS has issued a final rule to encourage employers to truncate employees' social security numbers (SSNs) on copies of W-2s and other forms furnished to employees. The new rule is intended to aid employers' efforts to protect employees from identity theft. EPIC submitted comments to the IRS in support of the rule, but argued that the rule should require employers to truncate SSNs rather than only allowing them to do so. EPIC said: "W-2 forms have been the target of several high-profile breaches" and recommended that the IRS require truncated SSNs "to protect employees from future breaches." EPIC has participated in the leading cases involving the privacy of the SSN and has frequently testified in Congress about the need to establish privacy safeguards for the SSN to prevent identity theft and financial fraud.

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