applepenpineapple

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About applepenpineapple

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  • Location Germany
  • Nationality Pasta
  • Gender Male
  1. For expats living in foreign countries, it may have become difficult to access IRS internet services with the new requirement to go through an additional identity verification and signup procedure with private company id.me. The old IRS accounts will become obsolete next summer. https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/irs-unveils-new-online-identity-verification-process-for-accessing-self-help-tools   The automated verification procedure with id.me requires a US address and a US landline or contract mobile number. VOIP and prepaid mobile numbers are not accepted. Photographic documents with US issued ID card or passport is also required. You must also provide your SSN. It appears that id.me compares the data you entered with your uploaded document, and then possibly with a credit agency. Failure may occur if a credit report freeze is in place at the credit agency. I kept getting failures. https://help.id.me/hc/en-us/articles/360017922513-How-do-I-verify-my-identity-   Oddly, 2FA setup does not require a US telephone number. 2FA login text codes arrive to German numbers via UK and French numbers, and sometimes a German mobile number. However, a US VOIP number was not accepted.   Threads on other expat forums indicate being unable to proceed when no US address or number is available. Some report failure with the automated verification system even when using valid US information, and then having to wait up to 5 hours to escalate to a live video call with a human.     Automated identity verification: upload US driver's license or US Passport (I have converted to a German driver's license, so I used my US Passport) by taking a photo of it with your computer or smartphone. You must give permission to access the camera. Selfie verification - you must place your face in front of the display so that the rainbow color effect reflects off your skin, otherwise the verification process fails. This is not explained to you. So if your webcam is separate from your monitor, you must place the camera directly in front / centered / perpendicular to the monitor. Laptop displays or smartphones need to be turned up to maximum brightness, otherwise the colors will be overpowered by ambient room lighting.  If this fails, you are forced to go through the live video call with a human. You cannot go back to the previous step no matter how many times you attempt to restart the process. You can only delete your account and signup with a new email address, because the old email address used for the failed attempt cannot be used again. Enter personal data - Here is where the problem starts. US address and US landline / mobile contract number must be entered. I have an old bank account that still has a US address, but I do not have a US landline / mobile contract number. I tried several combinations of VOIP and prepaid sim card numbers, but always failed. After several attempts the only option is a live video call with a human. It could also be because I have credit report freezes.     It seems that a live video call with a human would accept foreign (German) addresses. I am not sure how to proceed to the live video call if you don't have a US address (if you only have a German address) to first fail the initial automated verification in order to get the option to escalate. https://help.id.me/hc/en-us/articles/360052242853   Live video call with a human: You must photograph several pieces of documents that contain your full name, address, and full SSN (SSN card required, otherwise you will need a 1099 or W-2 but those usually only show the last 4 digits https://help.id.me/hc/en-us/articles/1500002264822). They list several acceptable types of documents. A foreign national ID card is in the list but did not show up as an actual option for me, possibly because I entered a US address. After uploading the documents, you must then enter the name, address, and SSN exactly as shown. Here it seems you are able to enter a German address.  https://help.id.me/hc/en-us/articles/360017833054 If you upload a previously photographed document, you can do so with the same device (e.g. computer) that you are accessing the website from. If you choose the option to take a photo, it will ask you to enter a telephone number to a smartphone where they will send a text message with a URL. Follow the URL to a website and allow it to access your camera. Use the website / software to take photos of your documents for direct upload. Take another selfie, but with the smartphone if you selected to take photos of documents. If you selected to upload previously photographed documents, then you would take the selfie from your computer webcam. Wait for a human, give permission to access the camera and microphone. The actual wait time for me was more than 3.5 hours. However, the timer started at 2 hours, quickly dropped to 45 minutes even though there was actually more than 3 hours remaining, and then dropped further to 10 minutes when there was more than 2 hours remaining. It rises back up to 30 minutes and then fluctuates up and down to 8 minutes when there is actually more than 1 hour remaining. After connecting to a live human, you must give verbal permission to record the video. If not, you cannot proceed. You must confirm your full name, address, SSN, email address, as entered previously. You must display the photographic ID card and SSN card in the camera so that the human can make a screenshot. If the human approves, you then end the call and then go back to the IRS website to login through a redirect to id.me. Login to id.me and approve the transmission of your personal data to the IRS that you previously shared with id.me (First Name, Middle Name, Last Name, Phone, Street, City, State, Postal Code, Full SSN, Birth Date, Group Affiliation) It seems that the telephone number that id.me has on your record is the one that you use for the 2FA, which could be the German number. You may then be unintentionally sharing your German number with the IRS if you originally did not intend to.   Accessing the id.me account website: make sure not to accidentally click the checkmark for the "please subscribe me to id.me offers and discounts" you can then reassign a different email address to the account, but possibly not change the other data entered with the verification process   What seems a bit problematic with security of personal data: id.me, a private company, retains all of the personal data that you entered in the verification process, another potential source of unintentional data leak. not sure if this data is sent to the IRS again every time you login, or if some other method of establishing a key is used. But when logging off the IRS website, you are redirected back to the id.me website and then redirected again back to the IRS website. they possibly also retain photos and screenshots of your documents, including bank statement if you uploaded it (if leaked, these photos could be used to forge verification somewhere else) the human who made the live verification may possibly be self employed or contracted by third party. They are not IRS or federal employees. The human appeared to be working from a room at home next to a window while looking at photos of your documents. There is a risk that a bad human could possibly retain copies of your data, or perhaps a security flaw could expose your documents or data while being transmitted to the human at various locations during the transmission. most likely not GDPR compliant for EU residents after completing the video call, the webcam is still recording unless you move the landing page to the background or completely close it. Remember to revoke permission to the camera and microphone for id.me websites.
  2. My understanding is that the new OSS rules apply to distance selling of goods and TBE electronic services to other EU countries for B2C transactions. But does the new rules also apply to intra-community services performed locally?   For example, if an accountant in Germany performs accounting services while sitting at home in Germany, for a consumer in France (B2C), before July 1 with the old rules, the accountant would charge German VAT.   From July 1, would this continue to be the same, or would the German accountant now charge French VAT to the French consumer?   If the German accountant travelled to France and then performed the accounting services in France instead of Germany, would French or German VAT be charged either before or after July 1?
  3. Does anyone know of a US SIM card that I can use in Germany to receive SMS text verification messages from US bank accounts, something that doesn't charge monthly fees and only charges for the minutes and text that you use, like how German prepaid cards work?   I used to simply give the banks my US Skype number, but recently they want to send a verification link or code by SMS, which Skype numbers can't receive if they're sent by SMS short code. So I'm going to ask a friend to buy a SIM from the US and mail it to me.   But I don't see any prepaid SIM cards that don't require you to buy a monthly plan with a monthly fee. The cheapest prepaid SIM card plan that I could find is Ultramobile (T-mobile) PayGo, which is $3 a month, with international roaming allowed.   However, I don't know if SMS short codes work while roaming internationally with the Ultramobile SIM card. I've read that some people were  not able to receive them with some of these prepaid SIM cards.