Issues with TRACES website


In most countries the withholding tax provisions are applicable for salaries or for foreign payments only. In the US, for example, withholding taxes are applicable on wages, payment to foreign persons, dividends and interest. In the UK, it is applicable only on salaries. In India however, the provisions are applicable to routine domestic transactions also, which increases transaction cost hugely and places a big compliance burden on businesses making the payment, not to mention sucking out large amount of funds businesses could be using to invest productively. While there are several things which could be improved with the TDS system in India, currently this post is about the new website launched by the Income Tax Department called TRACES ( It took years for the system to be stabilised around the previous online system which was run by NSDL (

However suddenly and without any prior information, the government has moved to  a new system called TRACES for the TDS related procedures. From the outset, the new system is plagued with the following problems:

1) Non-processing of returns for weeks after filing It is taking several weeks for TDS returns filed under the new system to be processed. For example, for a revised return filed in December 2012, the revised Form 16A was not available for download till last week of January 2013. Even new returns take upto 10-15 days for processing.

2) Non-Availabilty of Form 16A This is a direct consequence of the non-processing of returns as stated above. The Form 16A are not available until the return is processed. In one case, the return was delayed by a day, so in any case there was a likelihood of fine for delayed submission, but the return was not processed in the 14 days available before the due date of downloading Form 16A, which meant that even 16A would be delayed possibly leading to further fines.

3) Frequent errors on the website The website is frequently down or showing errors. On 30th January 2013, which was the due date for issuance of TDS certificates for non-government deductors, the site was down for maintenance the entire day. There is no information yet if the time limit for issuance of certificates will be increased and it is likely that the assessees will be hit with penalty notices for "Delay in furnishing of TDS certificates".

4) Slow generation of Form 16A by the new software We used to generate Form 16A from the earlier software, which took less than a minute. However with the new utility released, the generation of TDS certificates takes place at a speed of only 2-3 certificates per minute. It took the software half  an hour to generate 79 TDS certificates for a client.  

Suggested Improvements

1. Automatic generation and mailing of TDS certificates The system to generate Form 16 / 16A is very tedious. Why can't the system mail the Form 16 / 16A as soon as the return is processed. We are living in an age where computers crunch data in no time, and it doesn't seem difficult to modify the system to enable automatic generation of TDS certificates.

2. Simple Online filing of TDS returns While the filing process of Income Tax Returns is simple, the process for TDS returns is long and convulated. There should be an option for registered assessees  to simply upload their TDS returns under Digital Signature.  




Mr. Tandon, Based on, I can go to TRACES site from Kuwait. But not able to log in with my TIN ID & PW. Tried to register as New User - Tax Payer. But I don't know what to fill under Option 1 or 2, which is mandatory to register. How I register? What is in e tutorial?

You have to register again with TRACES. For fresh registration with traces you have to use some paid proxy service. VPNFIRE is the best for this. Further, you must have data for either for Option 1(TAN of TDS Deductor, date of tds deduction & amount) or Option 2 (Challan No. & amount of Advance or Self assessment tax deposited by you in this or any previous financial year), Indian mobile number to get activation code. If you are not computer savvy then it may seem cumbersome to you. The best solution is tell your relative or friend in India to register for you and send you the password. Then login in to TRACES and change your password and mobile number and email address.

Under option 1, fill the details from you earlier Form 26AS.
Get the details of the TAN, Amount paid, Date for previous TAX deduction.
I faced the same issue and learned it hard way. By following the above I could register.

Wish you good luck.

I guess there is one more problem. I cannot get the authentication process done. Everytime, I fill inn the details and proceed for generating TDS certificates or requesting a consolidated file, it always shows 'invalid details'. I am sure I cannot punch wrong data for 25 times from the same return.


Please check your receipt no. Sometimes we do make silly mistakes, for instance one of our staff kept entering acknowledgment no. of 27Q for generating Form 16A of Form 26Q.

Common mistakes include:
1) Entering the wrong return number
2) Error in challan date - check the correct challan tender date from NSDL site
3) Enter PAN details of only the challan no. entered

hi Vivek - could you register> I am unable to do so. Each time it says Invalid Details! But what on earth is invalid ?

This time the STD Codes for activation are either not sent or it does not reach my mobile with dual sim card. However other SMS reaches both of my mobile numbers. When I report the matter through email, I receive a standard message every time to wait for another 2 days, when registration can be redone. I don't know what is happening out there in Ghaziabad.

All fields are mandatory, if fields are blank you have to enter space for validation to pass

Pls check whether caps key is on or off, dont copy & paste your password. Type in accurate way.

I had trouble getting registered. I kept on entering the codes that I had received on my email and mobile, but it refused to go through after many attempts just saying "Invalid data".

After some thinking I realized that in the code letter "O" and digit Zero may look alike, so when I tried the other combination it worked.

Actually traces should not include digit zero and letter "O" in the codes that they supply, that will avoid confusion.

It is messier than what looks on the surface. The website is unavailable for several days now. The website is supposed to be at But a check would show that this IP number which is part of Bharti issued numbers is shown as registered to Apeejay School in NOIDA. So not oly is Infosys messing things up but Bharti or whoever has registered the domain to tdscps has also goofed up.

I agree with Vivek totally. I made no mistake at all and tried many times without nay results. I complained. After reminders they asked me to send screen shots. I complied three times. No response. Now the mails to tdscpc are all bouncing and not even reaching them. TRACES is an outrage, a shame. In short, I am unable to register in TRACES for no fault of mine.

All fields are mandatory, please use space for blank fields for it to work

Hi Ms. Nirmala Vaidya,

The most common mistake which throws this error is the combination of Surname and First Name in the PAN record. First go to the link to verify your PAN ( Use your date of birth and give your Surname/Last Name and First Name to check that your PAN details are verified and shows up in the website. Most often, the way we fill the form and the way the data is captured in PAN database are different. First, verify the data in the given link and ensure that there is no error in the name before attempting TRACES. But even after getting the login registered, when one tries to login at TRACES website, unless the JAVA Script is enabled in your browser, it will keep throwing same error "invalid details". There is serious gap in the TRACES website since Infosys took over and hope they would fix this on high priority. I, as a practicing CA, am facing the same issue for all my clients and am awaiting Infosys (or the IT department) to fix this issue.

R Mahalingam FCA

New wibesite is no use at all.

1. Correaction retunrn filled in Dec-2012 not yet processed.
2. Few return processed at first batch level, 2nd batch status not available
3. No response from custamer care
4. It is highly complicated, and not user frendly.
5. No status report at CPS for correction report filed

Advice to TDS-CPC

1. Make it online uploading of correction return
2. Instead of downloading consolidated file and uploading correaction return,Please make it online correaction return.
3. Once the TDS return uploded, Form 16A or 16 shold available in deductees income tax login
4.with out accpetance of previus correction returns we can not upload new correaction return
5. many more

first accpet the correction return or cancel all the NSDL return so that deductor will upload the fresh regular return.

The truth is simple. TRACES is not user friendly, badly designed and cumbersome. But is anyone listening? They do not read and remedy complaints. It is sad.

I am Tax Payer and tried to register while I was in Malaysia but unfortunately the web page opens with the message " Site is not available due to technical reason". Contacted TDSCPC Cell through emails and standard reply bear with us.I sent my registration data to my son to register me as I wanted to see my Form 26AS for depositing the balance tax if any. My son reported that he cannot go to step 2 as in step 1 message props conveying that PAN entered is invalid.

I purchased VPN Service for a month to open TRACES website using proxy server of India. The site opened but again I was unable to go beyond step 1 as it shows invalid PAN.


I had filed many revised etds returns for my clients after 21.11.2012. But till date, Traces is not giving any consolidated file or Form No.16A for Pan Update deductees. I called many times and sent lot of emails sent and i did not get reply.

Another issue is, I am not able to generate Form No.16A for one of my client after filing the regular etds return eventhough i give the correct details but it shows the invalid token number. I am not able to meet my client demands and I am very unhappy with this TRACES wesbite. Please restore the TAX INFORMATION NETWORK (NSDL)website.

Tax Deparment has really made total mess by launching the TRACES website. Tax Deuctors and Tax Payers should resolve not to issue forms 16/16A and file tax returns till the website is made fully functional. Till date you cannot access this website out of India. The very strange thing that you can access this website by hiding your IP address that is by using,, kproxy There is a total mess of IP address of this website.

There is another problems in this traces website. TDS nil return already filed tds consolidated file will not be downloaded. 2. TDS consolidated file for revised return already filed cannot be downloaded, the tds revised return filed on 25.01.2013 and also try to download the consolidated file every data duly required for downloading of tds consolidated file error message shows invalid token no. Token No. is correct at the time of fililng the original tds return.
Majority of the people does not like the new web site traces. Please return back the old Website NSDL.


I am unable to access TDCCPC.GOV.IN for many days now... the message is shown as website not available due to technical reason. I the get the same message when I try to access this through efilingincometax website....

When I am in UK I cannot open TDS-CPC (TRACES) website. It says that the site cannot be opened due to technical reasons. However it opens without any problem in USA.
IT Dept /CPC are not responding to my emails. The call centre girl told me that nothing can be done and we have to live with it.

Hello - so can you please advise how NRIs can access this website through the proxy solution you mention above? Detailed steps please.

I have succeeded in accessing this website to view Form 26AS. You con access this site through kproxy agent by to you have to pay US$5 for 10days. Go to and do the needful. You can try through, which is free proxy site but you have to unstick JavaScript, click options under address bar and in the drop down menu do this. Please note paid kproxy agent will do every thing 100% but free prroxy not 100% sure.
Raj Kumar Tandon

Thanks very much. I will try both options!

Please go to and download kproxyAgent and follow the steps. As already told this proxy is not free and you have to pay US$5 for 10 days use. If you are not interested to spend then try free proxy. Go to and click on more options under the address box. In the drop down menu un-tick the JavaScript. Now in the address box enter and the TRACES home page will open. If you are already registered with TRACES only then you can view Form 26AS. For registration on TRACES please down load etutorial from TRACES Home page.

Don't use proxy sites, you can view 26AS from internet banking as well

Hello Garish,

If unable to follow from earlier replies give your email I'd I will send you all the proper links to open the TRACES website out of India.

error - site is not available due to technical error a am trying to open it through as u stated above but the same error is continue. pls help me to solve the problem.


Hello Grish,

If you have ipad then please install VPNFIRE from Apple store. It will give you facility to connect to VPN and then you can open TRACES website without any problem. It offers a free trial which is sufficient for viewing Form 26AS twice. It has very cheap plans - 55/-, 220/- Rupee for 7 days and 30 days. Install VPNFIRE And every thing is self explanatory. Please note it does not work in China as China has blocked the Domain of VPNFIRE.



VPNfire is meant to by pass Internet restrictions imposed. In India TRACES Website is access able. If it is not access able then there should be some other reason. If TRACES website is opening and you are unable to register then certainly you are inputting some wrong data. VPNFIRE offers free trial before purchase if you want you can use it.

I was able to view my From 26AS using IE, when accessing it via the tax web-site
Using Chrome continues to throw up errors.

I have filed revised returns for my clients in January 13 and still I could not download 16A. I have requested in e-mails many times with screen shot, but no reply. I have also called many times but they reply it will be done soon. From last ween I try to call and but message comes number is busy for whole day. Even 4 months past for filing revised returns I could not generate Form 16A with TRACE. Is there any option?

You can file a grievance with the Ministry of Public Grievances and complaint to CBDT. Ask for information under RTI Act. The more noise yu make, the better.

Hello all,

We have web site called .

which will solve all the queries and file your return online..

just go through it.

you will definatly find it helpful. and will find all the money back


The morons working for Infosys are not able to fix the problem. Please bear with the moron...

I have registered as new user and activated also. But subsequently unable to login and also not getting any error message.

I have the same problem as Sunil. but it seems some people can access. not sure whats going wrong. can someone help.

how i get my submitted fill

Delay in processing TDS return which results non availability of TDS certificate (form 16/16A) is the main drawback with TDSCPC.

I filed Correction return for my client (24Q/26Q-FY 12-13 - for 3 Qtrs) - on 11th July & 15th July not yet processed, which results me not able to issue form 16/16A to file IT return before 5th August 13.

Whenever I contact call centre, they say they are forwading the issue with high priority. But No respose as on today.

I m not sure, will I be able to issue TDS certificates to the vendors to file IT returns before due date?

Stupid site keeps saying "Invalid Data" when I try to register, without saying what is invalid, tried several times, data is good, like someone said, the website designers are morons. If something is invalid, at least say which field and why. Horrible.

Still not working!




I am buyer of a property. I have deposited the TDS (Form 26QB) on 31st July'13. I am trying to download Form 16B for assesment year 2014-15. But getting error "No data available for the specified search criteria".

I have mailed my issue to with screenshot details & also called customer care Dept # 0120 -4814600 so may times. Every time they said that please mail us your concern with all the details, we will resolve your issue within 72 hours.

Its almost a month now but till the date i haven't get any response from traces & my issue is remain same.

Please help me...

Same case with me, I have tried enough times different combinationas and sent mails and got reply but of no use. I think not even 10th standard people are sitting in customer care. Finally given a toll free number but that too does not work properly. For last 45 days I am trying to register and change my address in profile but invain. Its a lousy website.
Can any one tell me if there is a way online to change my address

How traces is getting data on lower TDS certificate details. Example they are sending notices for lower deduction cases by checking validity of the certificate. But unfortunately the traces database is showing “null” for validity period.
All the certificate which we have received from vendors are genuine and provided by Income tax department it self.
Now, as a payer, how we can update data other than certificate number? Who is responsible to update certificate limit and validity? Why payers simply bear the cost of issues with system?
Why traces not pulling data directly from Tax department?

I Feel the registration of TRACES is the most difficult process on entire website process of all IT related website.

things will be little bit smooth if first time registration user name and password sent to the registered email and mobile number shown in the TAN registration.

If it is not happened I agree to follow this difficult process.

I am a Senior Citizen, and a TDS-deductee (that is, a tax payer).

With regard to accessing my Form 26AS for AY 2014-15, I find that TRACES is aiming what looks like a tracer bullet at me. I am encountering this problem over the last two days. When I accessed TRACES in end October, 2013, I did not face this issue.

When I log in to TRACES portal, it throws a screen at me, which informs that a valid Form 16 / 16 A is only that which is generated and downloaded from the TRACES portal. However it makes it impossible for me to view my Form 26AS unless "I agree to the usage and acceptance of Form 16 / 16A generated from TRACES".

I get the same screen from the TRACES web site, even when I try to access my Form 26AS through Incometax eFiling site as well as through Internet Banking site of my Bank.

Now, my problem is this: If the Competent Authority (CBDT?) has already ruled that Form 16 / 16A will be valid, only if it has been generated and downloaded from TRACES site, then where is the question that I, a mere Taxpayer, who has no say in the matter, have to agree for the "usage and acceptance" as now demanded by TRACES? TRACES can certainly inform me about this rule change, but why should it insist that I agree to it? I have no other choice but to agree for whatever the IT rules are!! Why is TRACES seemingly blackmailing me by denying access to my Form 26AS unless I specifically agree while trying to access my Form 26AS, to this condition stipulated by them?

Is this action by TRACES legal? Does it not amount to "denial of service (to provide access to my Form 26AS)" on the part of TRACES?

What are the implications of my accepting the above condition imposed by TRACES?

I would be very grateful for your advice on this issue.