I received a letter from Revenue the other day.
Normally they go straight into the recycle bin but this one was interesting. It was suggesting that I might have some medical bills from which I could get a rebate. They said it was simple. All I had to do was to go online and claim.
Yesterday I decided to have a bash at this so I went into the website they suggested.
I had to have an account!
They gave an option to open a account and all I needed was my name [which I knew], my date of birth [Which I also knew] and my RSI number which is what I refer to as my cattle-tag number, though it isn’t permanently clipped into my earlobe. They also wanted my address, my mobile number and my home phone number. I don’t know what would happen if I didn’t have a mobile?
I entered the requested information and hit Return. They then told me I had to select two out of three options for verification – my driving licence, my P60 or a notice of tax assessment. My driving licence was no problem. I probably have a P60 somewhere but it would take weeks or months to find it if it hasn’t already been thrown out. And as for a tax assessment? Hah! Obviously I had hit a brick wall.
Another way to get into the site was to use MyGovID, which they tell me allows access to just about any and every government department all under one roof. I had nothing to loose so I decided to apply for this ID, even though it pains me to facilitate their moves to tag us all into their databases.
I went into the MyGovID website. They promised that it would be simplicity itself to apply and that all I needed was my name, my mobile number and my cattle tag. I entered them and sure enough they sent me a text to my mobile with a code to enable me to proceed. So I proceeded and generated a nice password.
I was in!
So I went to the home page where they welcomed me and all that shit and gave a list of departments. I selected Revenue.
Ah! says they. What I need now to get any further is a Verified Account but not to worry – it’s easy peasy as all I need is a Basic Account [how the fuck do they think I got this far?], a mobile phone, a Pubic Services Card [which I have] and my cattle tag number.
I hit the Login Now button.
So I logged into the site using the login I had already used to get that far. That brought me to a page telling me to verify myself, and what was my cattle tag number. I entered it.
This brought me to a page with just one simple message – “Please drop into your local office to have your mobile phone verified“. What the fuck?
I checked where my “local office” was and it’s in Skobieville. No fucking way I am going in there.
So they have already verified my phone number otherwise I couldn’t have gotten this far and now they want me to physically go into an office to verify it again? Am I supposed to walk up to a counter and wave my phone at them and declare “this is it”? What kind of gombeen shitehawks are they?
I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised. This is the government I’m dealing with and everything has to be as complex and as frustrating as possible.
Sometime, when I have a spare five hours I might phone them and ask how the fuck I am supposed to get into a system that is so secure that no one can get into it.
Either that or I’ll just hack into their system directly.