MPs say Revenue website is doomed
A powerful parliamentary select committee has said the Inland Revenue's online tax return service is doomed to failure without significant improvements in security and reliability.
A report by the Commons Public Accounts Committee says that plans to have more than half the country use the service is unlikely to be met despite Inland Revenue’s pledge to offer all its services via the web by 2005.
The committee cites problems including security breaches and technical glitches which has lead to public confidence in the online service falling so much that it has fewer than 80,000 users.
MP’s say that the Inland Revenue does not have a ‘full grip’ of the costs and potential benefits of its £200m e-strategy.
The Inland Revenue needs to give more incentives for people to switch from paper-based systems and make more reassurances about security, it argued.
Further criticism of the government’s general e-government strategy was also expressed.