Skip to comments.Watchdog: IRS erased backups after loss of tea party emails
Posted on 06/24/2015 5:18:18 PM PDT by mandaladon
WASHINGTON (AP) IRS employees erased computer backup tapes a month after officials discovered that thousands of emails related to the tax agency's tea party scandal had been lost, according to government investigators.
The investigators, however, concluded that employees erased the tapes by mistake, not as part of an attempt to destroy evidence.
As many as 24,000 emails were lost because 422 backup tapes were erased, according to J. Russell George, the Treasury inspector general for tax administration.
The revelation is likely to fuel conspiracy theories among conservatives who say the IRS has obstructed congressional investigations into the scandal.
George is scheduled to testify before the House Oversight Committee Thursday morning about his investigation into the emails. The Associated Press obtained a copy of his prepared testimony.
An IRS spokeswoman said Wednesday evening the agency had no immediate comment.
George set off a firestorm in May 2013 with an audit that said IRS agents improperly singled out tea party and other conservative groups for extra scrutiny when they applied for tax-exempt status during the 2010 and 2012 elections.
Several hundred groups had their applications delayed for a year or more. Some were asked inappropriate questions about donors and group activities, the inspector general's report said.
The lost emails were to and from Lois Lerner, who used to head the IRS division that processes applications for tax-exempt status. In June 2014, the IRS told Congress it had lost an unknown number of Lerner's emails when her computer hard drive crashed in 2011.
The IRS had discovered that the emails were lost in February 2014. A total of 422 computer backup tapes were erased a month later, George says in his testimony.
At the time, IRS officials said the emails could not be recovered.
(Excerpt) Read more at news.yahoo.com ...
More FELONIES committed by the criminal regime.
So, WHO is already in handcuffs over this??
I agree. The claim that they erased the evidence “by mistake” was funny in a grim way. I don’t have the guts to try it the next time the IRS audits me, but I’m sure the liberal media will accept their story.
This is a confusing story. We’ve been told that backup tapes were found a few months back, and then just a week or two ago, we were told that those still had not been released because the IRS was going through them so they wouldn’t release any duplicates, or some absurd nonsense.
Hard to know what the status of the backups is or isn’t.
What part of “Backup” is so difficult to understand?
My guess is anyone in IT with a lick of sense would require a written order by competent authority to erase backup data storage.
“concluded that employees erased the tapes by mistake,”
One hand watches the other.
I’m very sorry, investigators, but NO ONE IS ACTUALLY SO STUPID/GULLIBLE/MISGUIDED AS TO BELIEVE THE ABOVE STATEMENT. NOT EVEN A DEMOCRAT. NO ONE. IT ISN’T WORKING.
Gee, it almost sounds like destruction of evidence.
I have made it clear to my management chain that I will only delete critical information upon receipt of written permission by an officer of the company. I believe that this is SOP in most businesses.
Yes, employees thinking that tapes full of data being collected for some reason were supposed to be erased.
That makes perfect sense to me. Employee thinking: “Tape full of data and it isn’t my tape...Well, I am at work, and it’s just sitting there...I think I’ll erase it.”
NO ARRESTS YET.
Paging Rosemary Woods, come to the white courtesy telephone please.
Hard to believe all of that nastiness over the 18 minutes of audio tape some years ago in the light of today’s events, isn’t it? It seems almost quaint.
My understanding is that backup tapes are not even designed to be erased, rather more tapes are purchased as more are needed. Can anyone in IT verify this?
Maybe it was a mistake. But you know damn well that if you or I had done this with personal property it would result in a contempt charge.
One backup tape erased by mistake may be plausible. But 422 of these incriminating tapes? That’s a shameful insult and someone should be frog-marched to the nearest federal prison for that outrageous lie.
That’s ok. I passed the audit after 9/12 anyhow.
Why does the government and all its employees work off the same scripts, and where are the honest IGs and EEO employees?
Odd that they never delete all the information they have on us.
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