The Canada Revenue Agency announced that Canadians should be able to resume e-filing their tax returns before the end of the week, after a computer glitch discovered last week put the processing of more than 1 million tax returns on hold.CRA Commissioner Michel Dorais said that the problem, a malfunctioning software patch, was not the work of hackers, or a computer virus, and did not threaten the security or privacy of taxpayer data. He said the agency’s services, including E-file, Netfile and a “My Account” feature should be back online no later than March 15. Dorais said that the data for any taxpayers who had already filed was still intact, and that the personalized account feature would allow taxpayers to track the progress made on their return.
The agency had to shut down all of its 75 databases on Monday after the problem was discovered, which caused the processing of all returns, including paper-based returns submitted by mail, to be delayed. Temporary workers will be in throughout the week to help the agency play catch-up.
According to published reports, the agency’s computer system often goes down for a few minutes on occasion, but this was the first time the system crashed for more than an hour. The CRA would only say that the flawed software patch came from one of its outside service providers.
The deadline for filing taxes is April 30 and government officials have said the CRA’s problems will not effect that date.
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