Taxes and Social Media part 1: The IRS

With tax season coming to an end, most of us have already submitted a report of our past earnings to Internal Revenue Services. With that in mind, some of us might want to ask ourselves if the information on our social media activity matches the information on our tax forms. Specialists such as Kristen Mathews of Proskauer Rose LLP believe that IRS will not hesitate to snoop around on your social media if they sense you have reported false information.  As seen in the video below, many people find it strange and wonder how it could be legal for the IRS to complete such searches. Mathews explains that recently, privacy laws of this sort have become more lenient.

Although the IRS could potentially use a minor detail to support a red flag on a tax report, it has been the obvious cases that have given this method the most success. One such example of a fraudulent tax report mystery that did not take long to solve involved a woman named Rashia Wilson. She bragged about her gains from misfiled tax forms on her Facebook. One post even read “YES I’M RASHIA THE QUEEN OF IRS TAX FRAUD”.




4 thoughts on “Taxes and Social Media part 1: The IRS

  1. Like we talk about in class no one reads the terms and conditions of things anymore so who even knows what is legal and not! I don’t think this is as big of a violation as the post where banks were just checking out your Facebook to make sure you had the same job listed. I didn’t care for that, but in this case you shouldn’t be hiding something from the IRS because that is illegal. In the case you mentioned that was just plain stupidity that gave that person away. People can’t help but to brag; it gets so many people in trouble though!

  2. What people post on social media is out there for the entire world to see, so I really do not feel bad for this Rashia Wilson person you used. I don’t think this is that invasive because people should be smarter about what they are posting. When it comes to claiming taxes, it is unethical to lie and try to cheat the system and if a person is caught because of what is on their social media account, I hold no sympathy. It has been drilled in our heads since our generation first started using social media to be careful what you post on the world wide web.

  3. Stephanie Gross says:

    I understand that the IRS would be able to use social media to help them detect fraudulant tax reporting. Although, I don’t believe anyone should worry. The IRS are not out to look at every minor detail on most peoples tax forms. Many people get by with making small mistakes on their forms all the time. So, I believe that the IRS would utilize social media only if they are looking into a substantial case. In the case of the woman who publically announced her fraudulant reporting, she just isn’t the brightest person in the world.

  4. I agree with Stephanie and Ashby in that the person you used as the example does not seem very credible in her claim. People should be well aware that anything posted online is open for the world to see, and I think the IRS is credible enough to keep people’s information safe.

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