Are you aware of the increasing security and privacy risks when sending and receiving sensitive information electronically, such as your Tax File Number (TFN)?
TFNs are unique set of numbers issued by the ATO to identify individuals, corporations and other entities. If in the wrong hands, your TFN could be used to commit fraud. In addition, lost TFNs could take a long time to fix and may cause various difficulties for you, such as getting a job, a loan, renting a house, or applying for government services or benefits.
As your trusted advisers, we are taking every step to protect the safety your TFN information and ensure that they are only used or disclosed for a purpose authorized by the law. For example, you will find that the tax documents that you receive from us will no longer have your TFN displayed.
The ATO has suggested the following steps to protect your identity:
- Only give your TFN to organizations or people who have a legitimate need for it, such as your tax agent, current employer or bank.
- Destroy or delete your TFN from documents before throwing them away.
- Don’t share your online passwords with others and never reply to emails with your TFN, password or other sensitive information.
In addition, we encourage you to also consider the following:
- Delete the TFN from the PDF or email before forwarding on or submitting to client portal
- Password protect the PDF
- Call us to request your TFN instead of email
- Check with us before disclosing your TFN to any authorities, other than banks or share registries.
Your Australian Business Number (ABN) is not considered sensitive as they are publicly available.