HMRC Online Fail
I don’t usually feel compelled to draw attention to a website that is so undeniably stupid that whomever is responsible deserves to be sent away to join the circus but when that website is provided by your own government and said website is preventing me from paying the taxes that I am legally obliged to pay then I feel duty bound to point it out.
That was the situation today when I logged on to Her Majesty’s Customs & Revenue (HMRC) online service at https://online.hmrc.gov.uk to pay my quarterly tax return. I was prompted to enter answers to some shared secrets in order that my identity could be proven in the future; upon entering those answers here is what I was presented with (note that I have changed the answers to protect my privacy but the problem is still the same):
Let’s review exactly what is wrong here. I am required to supply answers that contain both letters and numbers:
But here’s the thing. The names of my first and last school do not actually have any numbers in them. Do you understand that HMRC? Your stupid rules prevent me from truthfully answering your questions. Hence I have the option of either (a) making up fake answers to those questions (which negates the point of having them in the first place) or (b) not paying my tax return. I am assuming that (b) might be considered a tad naughty (some might say illegal) therefore what choice do I have?
I will inform HMRC by linking to this blog post and hopefully someone with an ounce of intelligence might be able to fix it. Watch this space!