Security stepped up for online tax return service

Junior finance minister Eric Wiebes.Wiebes: Tax office hotline is not an advice service

Filing tax returns online is more secure this year following the introduction of new measures, junior finance minister Eric Wiebes has said.

Wiebes said the tax office had stepped up security against DdoS attacks, where a website is brought down by overloading its servers with requests, but did not give further details.

Around 6.8 million individuals and 1.2 million business owners will have to file a tax return this year. Some details will be completed in advance by the tax service; in around 60% of cases the taxpayer will have to do nothing more than sign and return the form, Wiebes said.

Last week the consumers’ association Consumentenbond found that two-thirds of questions fielded by the tax office’s Belastingtelefoon helpline were answered wrongly or insufficiently. Wiebes said the helpline was not designed to be a tax advisory service and could not deal with complex queries.