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HMRC is offering three million taxpayers the opportunity to ask Alexa, Amazon’s virtual home assistant, for help in renewing their tax credits by the 31 July deadline
People with Amazon Alexa-enabled devices can ask Alexa to ‘open HMRC’ and find help and information with a change of circumstances, payment information, or a renewal in relation to their tax credit application.
No personal information is stored on Alexa and customers cannot renew their tax credits using Alexa. If an individual requests further information via a text message, the mobile phone number is stored for six hours and then automatically deleted.
Tech-savvy taxpayers can also use the HMRC app on their smartphone to renew their tax credits, check their tax credits payments schedule, and find out how much they have earned for the year.
HMRC statistics show more than 65,000 individuals this year have already used the app to renew their tax credits, compared to 38,411 people in 2017.
Taxpayers can also log in online to gov.uk and check the progress of their renewal.
Angela MacDonald, HMRC’s director general for customer services, said: ‘We know our customers have hectic lives – full of interruptions and distractions – which is why HMRC’s online services are available at all times of the day and night.
‘We’ve improved our services so customers can renew their tax credits at a time that’s convenient to them.’
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