Knowledge Base

14304: Drake Tax Security Information

Preparers Setup

When logging in to Drake Tax Software, all preparers are being asked to set up or enter a strong password, why? 

Beginning with Drake16, a strong password will be ​required to open the program. Usernames and Passwords will be required for all users of Drake Tax including admin users, return preparers, and front office employees. Users can still be initially set up under Setup > Preparer(s) and the level of access to Drake Tax functions (security level) can still be limited by the admin user. As part of the initiative to set new security standards, Drake Tax has implemented the use of strong passwords, password "age out," and log in sessions will now "time out" and require entry of the strong password.


Strong Password Requirements:
These passwords must meet the following minimum requirements:

  • the password will be a minimum of 8 characters,
  • at least one upper case letter (A-Z),
  • at least one lowercase letter (a-z),
  • at least one numeral (0-9),
  • at least one special character (@, #, $, %, etc.)

See Software User Passwords.​

Beginning in Drake21, the Primary Admin will also receive the following prompt to set up (or opt out of) Multi-Factor Authentication. See Related Links below for details on opting out or completing setup. 


Initial Login for Existing or Updated Preparers:
When an existing or updated preparer opens and logs in to Drake Tax for the first time, or after being reset, they will be prompted to set up the new strong password. To do this, follow the steps below:

  1. Double-click on the Drake Tax icon found on the desktop.
  2. When the Password setup screen opens, enter a strong password in the Password field.
  3. Confirm the entered password by re-entering it in the Repeat password field.

Note: that the password requirements will change from a red X to a green check mark as you successfully complete each step.

  1. Click Next to open the Security questions screen. 
  2. Select a Security question from the drop-list and type an answer.  
  3. Click Finish.

Note: If a user password is forgotten, enter the username and click on the Password help link.  You will be required to answer your security questions,then you can reset your password.  Admin and others in the Administrator Security Group will have password reset capabilities. If you forget your password and the answers to your security questions, or a user gets locked due to too many failed attempts, see one of your office administrators for assistance. 

Login for New Preparers:

  1. Double-click on the Drake Tax icon found on the desktop.
  2. Enter the user name given to you by your administrator and click Login.
  3. You will be prompted to enter your PTIN, or the code provided by your administrator.
  4. Enter the requested information.
  5. Click Next.
  6. When the Password setup screen opens, enter a strong password in the Password field.
  7. Confirm the entered password by re-entering it in the Repeat password field.
  8. Click Next to open the Security questions screen.
  9. Select a Security question from the drop-list and type in an answer.
  10. Click Finish.

Passwords "Age Out" Rules:

The software will now capture the date that a password is created or reset. The program will begin to prompt you regarding the password change a week before the password will age out. Passwords will expire after 180 days, on day 181 that a password has been in use, it will need to be reset before you can access Drake Tax. One week prior to expiration of a preparer's password, Drake Tax will give a daily reminder that the password will need to be reset in X number of days. Once that number of days has expired, the preparer will be forced to reset their password.

Login Session "Timing Out" Rules:

Preparer log in sessions will "time out" and become locked:

  • After 15 minutes of computer inactivity for a preparer or 10 minutes for an admin user (30 minutes in Drake16 & 17), or
  • After 24 hours of continuous computer activity.

Any open screen(s) will lock in place and require the preparer to re-enter his or her password in order to continue working in the program. If the preparer chooses to exit the program instead of entering in their password after the "time out," the software will close and any unsaved data may be lost.

Additional information may be found in the IRS articles Security Summit Partners Update Identity Theft Initiatives for 2017 and IRS, States and Industry Partners Provide Update on Collaborative Fight Against Tax-Related Identity Theft

Drake15 and prior

In Drake15 and prior, a password was not required for preparer logins. If you did not set up a password under Setup > Preparer(s), leave the password field blank and select Login. If you did set up a password and have forgotten it, please contact Drake Support at 828-524-8020 for assistance.

  • Note: The password cannot be over 8 characters. When the password is set up in Setup > Preparer(s), only 8 characters are allowed. If you entered more than 8 characters, only the first 8 characters were accepted. You should hear a warning bell if you try to enter more than 8 characters. If the password you thought you set up is over 8 characters, enter only the first 8 characters.

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