A:

The Electronic Federal Tax Payment System (EFTPS) is a free tax payment service offered by the U.S. Department of the Treasury to help individual and business taxpayers pay their federal taxes electronically. To use the service, you must first enroll online by entering your Taxpayer Identification Number (your Employer Identification Number if you're enrolling as a business, or your Social Security Number if you're enrolling as an individual), your banking account information, and your name and address as they appear on your IRS tax documents. Approximately one week after you enroll online, you will receive a PIN (Personal Identification Number) in the mail, and you can complete your online registration and begin making payments.

Phishing scams are one of the potential dangers of using the EFTPS system. These scams occur outside of the EFTPS website. In 2010, for example, fraudulent emails targeting EFTPS users were circulated with the subject line: Your Federal Tax Payment ID: 010363124 has been rejected. A link in the email prompted recipients to update their information, but instead installed malware used to intercept their online banking transaction data.

The IRS website warns, "The IRS does not initiate contact with taxpayers by email to request personal or financial information. This includes any type of electronic communication, such as text messages and social media channels. The IRS also does not ask for PINs, passwords or similar confidential access information for credit card, bank or other financial accounts. Recipients should not open any attachments or click on any links contained in the message. Instead, forward the e-mail to phishing@irs.gov."

The EFTPS website protects sensitive tax payment data by using firewalls and internal security policies to ensure that you and only you can make, cancel, and inquire about your tax payments. According to the EFTPS website, "Every secure interaction involving EFTPS online requires identification and authentication of each user. EFTPS online identifies and authenticated each taxpayer using his or her Taxpayer Identification Number, Personal Identification Number and Internet password. Without these key pieces of information, you may not use many of the functions of EFTPS online."

RELATED FAQS
  1. What are the advantages of paying your taxes with the Electronic Federal Tax Payment ...

    The Electronic Federal Tax Payment System (EFTPS) is a free tax payment service offered by the U.S. Department of the Treasury ... Read Answer >>
  2. What is a "phishing scam" and how can they be avoided?

    The term phishing (as in fishing for confidential information) refers to a scam that fraudulently obtains and uses an individual's ... Read Answer >>
  3. What is the difference between federal and state withholding tax?

    Discover whether you can file your taxes by yourself. The three main options for tax preparation are a tax professional, ... Read Answer >>
  4. Will I pay taxes on my Social Security payouts?

    Find out if you're one of the people who has to pay federal income taxes on the Social Security benefit you receive. Read Answer >>
  5. How do I use the IRS Free File tax forms?

    Free File is a way for taxpayers to prepare and file their federal taxes online for free. The service is available to individuals ... Read Answer >>
  6. How do I determine what to pay in taxes if my employer doesn't withhold payroll taxes?

    If your employer doesn't withhold payroll taxes, you'll need to know these points to know how much to pay in income tax. ... Read Answer >>
Related Articles
  1. Entrepreneurship

    Starting A Small Business: Taxes

    By Amy Fontinelle When you become a small business owner, you acquire a responsibility for making tax payments that you didn't have as an employee. Although you probably didn't realize it, your ...
  2. Taxes

    What's IRS Form 1040 For?

    Most U.S. taxpayers will be familiar with the 1040. By the end of filling it out, you'll know how much tax you owe, or what your refund is.
  3. Taxes

    Is Your Online Tax-Prep Service Secure?

    News that even IRS-approved online tax-prep companies can fail a cybersecurity test is worrying. Here are steps to keep your personal tax data safe.
  4. Taxes

    Late with Your Taxes? Grab IRS Form 4868

    Fill out this form to get a few more months to file your tax return. But remember, April 15 is still the payment due date if you owe taxes.
  5. Taxes

    Next Season, File Taxes On Your Own

    Master these fundamentals and you'll be doing your own taxes with minimal stress.
  6. Professionals

    Payment of Tax

    Payment of Tax
  7. Taxes

    Don't Have Your ID Stolen This Tax Season

    How to protect against tax-related identify theft – and what to do if it happens.
  8. Options & Futures

    When You Can't Pay Uncle Sam

    If you can't pay your taxes, there are some steps you can take to protect yourself. Discover your options here.
  9. Professionals

    Representation Before The IRS

    Describes exam topics covering legal authority and reference for Enrolled Agents.
  10. Taxes

    Personal Income Tax Guide: Common Filing Mistakes

    By Ken ClarkNo matter how much tax planning you do, if you screw up the actual process of filing your taxes, the ensuing penalties and time spent cleaning up the mess can quickly wipe out any ...
RELATED TERMS
  1. Electronic Federal Tax Payment System - EFTPS

    A service offered by the U.S. Department of the Treasury that ...
  2. Employer Identification Number - EIN

    A unique identification number that is assigned to a business ...
  3. Taxpayer Identification Number - TIN

    A number that is assigned to a tax paying businesses for identification ...
  4. Personal Identification Number - PIN

    A numerical code used in many electronic financial transactions. ...
  5. Form 2848: Power of Attorney and Declaration of Representative

    A tax form distributed by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) ...
  6. IRS Publication 556: Examination Of Returns, Appeal Rights And Claims For Refund

    A document published by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) that ...

You May Also Like

Trading Center