TREASURY INSPEcTOR GENERAL
FOR TAX ADMINISTRATION
THE INTERNAL REVENUE SERVIcE NEEDS ADDITIONAL
EMPHASIS ON cOMPUTER cOMPONENT RETIREMENT DEcISIONS
TO BE READY FOR THE YEAR 2000
Reference No. 093506
One of the most critical issues the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) faces this year is the need to make its computer systems Year 2000 (Y2K) compliant. The IRS depends on its automated systems to process tax returns, issue refunds, deposit payments, and provide employee access to timely and accurate taxpayer account data.
The objective of this review was to assess the IRSí efforts to account for retired components and to resolve uncommitted components, those for which no convert/retire decision had been made. components are unique items of software or hardware such as personal computers and programs that run on them.
Our review of the IRSí Year 2000 efforts for retired and uncommitted components showed that Information Systems (IS) and field and customer organizations generally made logical and sound decisions when evaluating the need to retire or convert their computer components.
The IRS needs additional emphasis on computer component retirement decisions in the following areas:
The decision-making process to retire or convert personal computer components in regions and service centers was not completed. Improvements were needed in the following areas:
If these areas are not addressed, the IRS may not have sufficient time to remedy unforeseen causes of delays in the conversion of personal computer products.
certain computer components identified as retired within one Information Systems function were not accurately classified. The misclassification of retired components indicated that INOMS did not accurately reflect the number of components being converted as well as the number of components having no Y2K impact in the System Support Division.
computer components identified as "to be retired" were not removed from active systems prior to service center mainframe consolidation. computer components identified as "to be retired" were not being removed from active systems and production libraries before being transferred to the Tennessee computing center (Tcc). As a result, retired components that are not Y2K compliant may be inadvertently used at a later date by the Tcc.
Summary of Recommendations
The century Date change Project Office needed to: 1) accelerate cOTS retirement and conversion decisions; 2) develop cost estimates and secure funding for these products; 3) modify INOMS to allow computers to be classified as "stand-alone" (not connected to a network); and 4) develop instructions for the transfer of retired components from the service centers to the computing centers during mainframe consolidations.
The System Support Division needed to ensure its "retired" components are properly classified.
Managementís Response: IRS agreed with the facts cited in the report and is taking appropriate corrective actions. The complete response is contained in Appendix IV. Portions of the response related to each recommendation are also included in the report.
To address the personal computer issues, management: will obtain enterprise licenses for standard cOTS products, has added an indicator to INOMS for "stand-alone" personal computers, and has finalized the cOTS hardware and software budget. Management also plans to review the status of all retired components in the System Support Division. In addition, new procedures will be issued for transferring retired components from service centers to computing centers.