Taxpayers hit by computer error
A computer error in the Inland Revenue's PAYE computer database could have led to hundreds of thousands of people paying the wrong amount of tax.
The mistake, in a well-established ‘housekeeping’ program, has led to the accidental deletion of taxpayers’ files, causing them to miss out on rebates or avoid paying extra tax bills.
The problem apparently came to light in a single paragraph in a 40-page National Audit Office report on the Revenue tabled last month.
And reports in The Guardian say the error was first noticed by the Revenue in the autumn of 2003, and could well have been going on undetected for several years.
An Inland Revenue spokeswoman said the result of an internal inquiry into the problem was expected within a few weeks.