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This gazette
Administered by: Treasury
Published Date 29 Apr 2019

Commissioner of Taxation

Notice of a data matching program

Cryptocurrency owners and traders are required to maintain records in relation to their holdings including records relating to the purchase, sale and transfer of cryptocurrency.

The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) will collect data from cryptocurrency designated service providers, under notice, to identify individuals or businesses who have or may be engaged in buying, selling or transferring cryptocurrency during the 2014-15 to 2019-20 financial years.

The data acquired will be electronically matched with certain sections of ATO data holdings to identify taxpayers that can be provided with tailored information to help them meet their tax and superannuation obligations, or to ensure compliance with taxation law.

The data to be collected may contain all or a selection of the fields listed for the 2014-15 through 2019-20 financial years:

 

Digital currency owner details

a.    Name

b.    Address

c.    Australian Business Number

d.    Date of birth

e.    Contact numbers (fixed line, mobile)

f.     Email address

g.    Social media account (Facebook, Twitter, Telegram, Reddit, Whirlpool, etc.)

 

Account and transaction details

h.    Status of account (open, closed, suspended, lost, etc.)

i.      Linked bank accounts

j.      Wallet address associated with the account

k.    Lost or stolen (crypto)currency amounts linked to accounts

l.      Unique identifier

m.   Transaction date

n.    Transaction time

o.    Type of (crypto)currency

p.    Amount (in fiat and cryptocurrency)

q.    Type of transfer

r.     Transfer description

s.     Total account balance

It is estimated that records relating to between 500,000 and 1 million individuals will be obtained.

The purpose of this data matching program is to ensure that taxpayers are correctly meeting their taxation and superannuation obligations in relation to cryptocurrency transactions and ownership. These obligations may include registration, lodgment, reporting and payment responsibilities.

The objectives of the cryptocurrency data matching program are to:

       Promote voluntary compliance and increase community confidence in the integrity of the tax and superannuation systems.

       Identify and educate those individuals who may be failing to meet their registration and/or lodgment obligations and assist them to comply.

       Gain insights from the data that may help to develop and implement treatment strategies to improve voluntary compliance; which may include educational or compliance activities as appropriate.

       Obtain intelligence to increase the ATO’s understanding of the behaviours and compliance profiles of individuals and businesses that have bought, sold or accept payment via cryptocurrency

       Ensure through compliance activities that individual and businesses that trade or accept cryptocurrency as payment comply with their lodgment, correct reporting and payment of tax (including capital gain and loss) and superannuation obligations.

A document describing this program has been prepared in consultation with the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner. A copy of this document is available at www.ato.gov.au/dmprotocols

The ATO complies with the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner’s Guidelines on data matching in Australian government administration (2014) which includes standards for data matching to protect the privacy of individuals. A full copy of the ATO’s privacy policy can be accessed at www.ato.gov.au/privacy