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This gazette
Administered by: Treasury
Published Date 13 Oct 2023

Gazette notice: Commissioner of Taxation – Notice of a visa data-matching program - 13 October 2023

The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) will acquire visa data from the Department of Home Affairs for 2023–24 through to 2025–26.

The data items include:

       identification details (address history for visa applicants and sponsors, contact history for visa applicants and sponsors, address history for migration agents, contact history for migration agents, active visas meeting the criteria, all visa grants, visa grant status by point in time, migration agents (visa application preparer who assisted or facilitated the processing of the visa), all international travel movements undertaken by visa holders (arrivals and departures), sponsor details (457 visa), visa subclass name).

We estimate that records relating to approximately 9 million individuals will be obtained each financial year.

The objectives of this program are to:

       help ensure that individuals and businesses are fulfilling their tax and super reporting obligations

       promote voluntary compliance by communicating how we use external data to help encourage taxpayers to comply with their tax and super obligations and to increase community confidence in the integrity of these systems

       continue to refine our understanding of the tax and super risks across visa holders, visa sponsors and migration agents

       develop and implement treatment strategies to improve voluntary compliance, which may include educational or compliance activities as appropriate

       help ensure visa populations fulfil their registration, lodgment, correct reporting and payment of tax and super obligations

       test the accuracy and strengths in our risk detection models and treatment systems and practices and identify areas for improvement

       identify potentially new or emergent approaches to fraud and those entities controlling or exploiting the visa framework

       improve the integrity of the tax and superannuation systems by cancelling ABNs of ineligible ABN holders

       support compliance activities under Australia's foreign investment rules.

A document describing this program is available at ato.gov.au/dmprotocols.

This program follows the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner’s Guidelines on data matching in Australian Government administration (2014) (the guidelines). The guidelines include standards for the use of data matching as an administrative tool in a way that:

       complies with the Australian Privacy Principles (APPs) and the Privacy Act 1988 (Privacy Act)

       is consistent with good privacy practice.

A full copy of the ATO’s privacy policy can be accessed at ato.gov.au/privacy.