Over the last decade or more the ATO has been working at increasing its visibility across various ranges of data. Where once taxpayers were relied upon for each line item in a tax return and erroneous items only detected through a tax audit, the ATO can now cross reference your information automatically.
Income from wages, interest, and dividends have been automatically provided to the ATO for some time. These are supplied by employers, banks, and public companies as they are required to inform the ATO of these transactions.
The ATO has the ability to notice suspicious activity using its data matching abilities. This data matching has shown up companies who miss-represent their internet sales, international sales, wages, and over claiming of deductions.
Cryptocurrencies are not immune to this scrutiny. Taxpayers have been caught with data matching thinking that their crypto profits were not visible to the ATO.
Some sectors of business are coming under increasing scrutiny where ‘cashies’ are common. Sectors where employees are paid in cash (i.e. no PAYG withholding is paid), or where jobs are done for cash (no GST is paid, and the amount not declared to ATO) are being checked by the ATO’s data matching software.
If you feel you have made an error with your declarations, the ATO does look favourably upon those who seek to amend their mistakes.
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