SSS warns vs UMID text scam; BIR to issue ‘smart’ TIN IDs to seniors
State-run pension fund Social Security System (SSS) on Wednesday issued an advisory against a text scam victimizing those applying for a Unified Multipurpose Identification System (UMID) card.
Meanwhile, the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) plans to roll out “smart” Tax Identification Number (TIN) ID cards made of PVC material, initially for senior citizens and registered professionals.
“The SSS has received reports that text messages from unknown senders have been sent to members, offering assistance for speeding up the processing of their UMID card applications in exchange for P100 or any amount as fee,” the SSS said in a statement.
“SSS does not have rush application for UMID cards nor is it collecting fees for such purposes as card applications are processed on a first-in first-out basis,” it said.
The SSS urged those who receive such fraudulent text messages to report these cases to any SSS branch or call SSS’s hotline numbers 920-6446 to 55.
Recipients of such text messages were also enjoined “to file a report with their own mobile phone service provider to stop the dissemination of bogus SSS text messages through their networks.”
Meanwhile, the BIR last June 20 had a soft launch of the initial phase of the production of smart TIN IDs.
“During Phase 1 of the project, the PVC TIN cards (with embedded microchip and security features) will initially be issued to senior citizens in the BIR national office and registered professionals under Revenue Region No. 8-Makati City’s Revenue District Offices,” the BIR said on its website.
The launch was attended by outgoing BIR Commissioner Kim S. Jacinto-Henares as well as outgoing Finance Secretary Cesar V. Purisima.
Last March, Henares told reporters that unlike the cardboard TIN IDs being issued for free, the smart ID cards will be slapped a fee.
Henares had declined to disclose the amount to be shelled out by applicants, but she had said the fee will cover door-to-door delivery via courier services.
A smart card is defined by BusinessDictionary.com as a “plastic card with embedded microprocessor chip, electronic memory, and a battery,” which is being used to authenticate, manage and store information. Some of these cards, which have the same size as a credit card, may be swiped through a magnetic reader, BusinessDictionary noted.
Henares had said if applicants already have “biometric” information with other government agencies such as the Government Service Insurance System, Pag-IBIG, PhilHealth and SSS, the BIR will just copy the information in their respective UMID IDs.
For new TIN applicants, they have to personally apply at their revenue district offices, Henares had said.
The BIR would also prioritize issuance of the new TIN IDs to those covered by the large taxpayers service (LTS) as well as certain regions or areas, such as Makati City, where most employees of LTS firms remit their taxes, according to Henares.
The BIR defines large taxpayers as corporations with authorized capitalization of at least P300 million registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission; multinational enterprises with authorized capitalization or assigned capital of at least P300 million; publicly listed corporations; universal, commercial and foreign banks; taxpayers with an authorized capitalization of at least P100 million belonging to the banking, insurance, petroleum, telecommunications, utilities, alcohol and tobacco industries; and corporate taxpayers engaged in production of metallic minerals.
Last year, Henares said the smart TIN IDs may eventually also be used to track value-added tax (VAT) receipts.
Henares had also pointed out that some taxpayers had been complaining that the existing ID could be “easily faked,” while a smart card is seen to be more secure. RAM
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