SA Revenue Services (Sars) announced over the weekend that it had fixed the problem reported by numerous tax practitioners related to the discontinuance of Adobe Flash player.
Adobe Flash Player is a browser plug-in used extensively in the early days of the internet to provide animations interactivity, but it was discontinued in December 2020 due to well publicised security problems. Users were urged to uninstall it as it had been replaced with a more secure tool, HTML5.
The discontinuation of Adobe Flash Player affected many e-filing functions at Sars, which says it has now fixed the bugs related to Flash.
A notice released over the weekend states: “Sars apologises for the inconvenience and service disruption caused by the discontinuance of the Adobe Flash player. We are pleased to inform you that a Sars Browser solution has been implemented enabling you to complete and submit the Flash-based forms not migrated to HTML5 yet.
“The Sars Browser enables access to ALL eFiling forms, including those that require Adobe Flash, thus maintaining compliance with your filing obligations. Click here to download the SARS Browser. To see our easy steps on how to download the browser, click here.”
Sars was forced to make ad hoc fixes to its e-filing system throughout January to allow e-filing to continue uninterrupted.
Saiba members reported their frustration with the interruption to the e-filing service caused by the discontinuance of Adobe Flash Player.
Members reports that the Sars Browser now enables access to all e-filing forms, including those that previously required the Adobe Flash Player.
The Sars Browser was created in order to successfully view, complete and submit Sars forms that have not yet been migrated to Hyper Text Markup Language (HTML5) on eFiling. In the interim, Sars will still continue the migration process.
Sars has had various external security checks of this solution and is satisfied with the security outcomes of the product. The Sars Browser may be used to access forms not yet migrated, which include:
- FORM CODE
- FORM DESCRIPTION
- Registration, Amendments and Verification Form
- Transfer Duty
- Financial Certificate Information
- Financial Declaration
- Tax Compliance Status Request
- Dividends Tax Transactions Information
- Withholding Tax on Interest.
Existing browsers such as Chrome and Edge will continue to work for all forms already migrated with the major and high volume forms, which are Income Tax (Personal Income Tax (PIT), Provisional Tax, Corporate Income Tax (CIT) & Trusts), Value Added Tax, Pay as you Earn and Excise.
The Sars Browser is deployed as a separate application and can only be used to access the Sars e-filing website and Sars website. As such, it cannot be used as a browser for general internet browsing.