Feeds

MPs slap HMRC for lack of joined-up IT

Gotta spend to save

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs has said it cannot afford the £250m required to join up its disparate IT systems so it could create a single tax record for every taxpayer.

The Public Accounts Committee investigated how the Revenue could do a better job of dealing with tax debt. The Revenue was owed £17.3bn on 31 March 2008, on total tax and National Insurance contributions of £450bn - some £4.5bn of this debt was more than a year old.

The Committee recommended HMRC use risk scoring to identify people who had simply forgotten rather than engaging in deliberate late payment. The Revenue is also unable to link different types of tax owed by the same taxpayer.

The Committee said the Rev's inability to look at a single taxpayer record were "major barriers to effective and efficient debt management".

It was also criticised for not measuring how cost-effective its various debt collection activities were, and for only working 9 to 5.

HMRC should also look at taking different payment methods; it only recently allowed payment by credit card and the setting up of direct debits by phone and online.

The Committee was also highly critical of the compensation deal worked out between EDS and the Revenue which was dependent on EDS winning future government contracts - something the Committee has previously warned against. After the failure of the tax credit system EDS agreed to compensate the Revenue - but only if EDS won future government contracts.

EDS agreed to pay £26.5m over three years dependent on it winning new contracts with other government departments. But because not all these contracts came through, EDS only paid £978,705 over the three years.

After EDS got taken over by HP it made a final lump payment in January 2009. The Committee noted that EDS was under no legal obligation to make this payment when it did.

Full report is available from here (pdf) ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Bono apologises for iTunes album dump
Megalomania, generosity and FEAR of irrelevance drove group to Apple deal
Facebook, Apple: LADIES! Why not FREEZE your EGGS? It's on the company!
No biological clockwatching when you work in Silicon Valley
Doctor Who's Flatline: Cool monsters, yes, but utterly limp subplots
We know what the Doctor does, stop going on about it already
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
Arab States make play for greater government control of the internet
Nerds told to get lost in last-minute power grab bid at UN meeting
'Cowardly, venomous trolls' threatened with TWO-YEAR sentences for menacing posts
UK government: 'Taking a stand against a baying cyber-mob'
Apple SILENCES Bose, YANKS headphones from stores
The, er, Beats go on after noise-cancelling spat
Zippy one-liners, broken promises: Doctor Who on the Orient Express
Series finally hits stride, but Clara's U-turn is baffling
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.