An internal review at the Internal Revenue Service has found that thousands of mobile internet cards and hundreds of smartphones issued to IRS workers aren't being used for months at a time, raising questions about whether millions of dollars spent for those items is being wasted.
The report found 68 BlackBerry smartphones issued at the IRS weren't even used in Fiscal Year 2011, and that over 2,500 employees may have been given an aircard or BlackBerry "without required management approval."
"(T)he IRS paid approximately $1.1 million during Fiscal Year 2011 for 13,878 aircards and 754 BlackBerrys that were not used for periods of three months to one year," the report from the Treasury Department's Inspector General stated.
The report says by being more strict about who gets extras like a mobile internet card and a smartphone, the IRS could save as much as $5.9 million over five years.
"For example, a BlackBerry was assigned as of May 2012 to a contact representative whose main duty is to answer calls on the IRS’s toll‑free telephone line from individuals requesting technical or procedural information and assistance," the report stated.