Home Australia pursues crypto buyers’ info in tax probe

Australia pursues crypto buyers’ info in tax probe


  • ATO requests crypto exchange data to catch tax evaders.
  • Demand includes birthdates, phone numbers, transaction specifics.
  • Crypto treated as assets, subject to capital gains tax.

The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) is seeking transaction data on up to 1.2 million accounts from crypto exchanges in a bid to identify tax evading users. The news follows recent reports that approved spot Bitcoin (BTC) exchange-traded funds could soon be visible on the Australian ASX stock exchange, according to reports.

According to a notice issued last month and reported by Reuters, the ATO aims to identify traders who have failed to report crypto asset exchanges or when they sold digital currencies to pay for goods and services. In a recent announcement, the ATO explains that the “data-matching programs help us fulfill our responsibility to protect public revenue and maintain community confidence in the integrity of the tax and super systems.” The communicate reads:

The innovative and complex nature of crypto can lead to a genuine lack of awareness of the tax obligations associated with these activities. Also, the ability to purchase crypto assets using false information may make them attractive to those seeking to avoid their tax obligations.

The personal data sought by the ATO includes date of birth, phone numbers, social media accounts, and transaction details such as bank accounts, wallet addresses, and the type of coin involved.

Are cryptos assets or currencies?

Australian authorities treat digital currencies as assets and not as foreign currency for tax purposes. As a result, investors are required to pay capital gains tax on profits from selling crypto assets and when they trade digital assets.

The popularity of crypto assets has been on the rise in Australia, with a treasury report from 2022 revealing that more than 800,000 Australian taxpayers had transacted in digital assets over the past three years, with a 63% increase in 2021.

Taxes and how to file them are still pain points for crypto traders and investors, feel free to consult our guide to clear up some of the most common misconceptions.

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The ReadWrite Editorial policy involves closely monitoring the tech industry for major developments, new product launches, AI breakthroughs, video game releases and other newsworthy events. Editors assign relevant stories to staff writers or freelance contributors with expertise in each particular topic area. Before publication, articles go through a rigorous round of editing for accuracy, clarity, and to ensure adherence to ReadWrite's style guidelines.

Radek Zielinski
Tech Journalist

Radek Zielinski is an experienced technology and financial journalist with a passion for cybersecurity and futurology.

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