Social Media Post Free From IT Snooping

Social Media Post Free From IT Snooping

It was reported that the taxman is going to keep a secret eye on social media posts with the intention of ensuring that such individuals or corporations pay their due taxes.

The tax department, however, does not intend to carry out such an activity as it could get various data and information sets from multiple agencies as well as possesses a strong data analytics setup towards work out the source and destination of high-value transactions, as stated by the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) Chairman.

This was called as a misconception considering that the Income Tax Department is snooping on social media posts connected to exotic foreign tours or possession of costly belongings towards checking undisclosed income.

The CBDT Chairman was asked whether the taxman or the I-T Department scans an individual’s Facebook, Twitter, Instagram as well as other social media handles for obtaining secret information and data about their income and spending behavior.

It was also reported that the taxman would keep a secret eye on social media posts in the direction of finding out who is undertaking a luxurious foreign trip or is exhibiting and showing off their expensive vehicle or any other belongings over these platforms, with the intention of ensuring that such individuals or corporations pay their due taxes.

The CBDT Chairman stated that they already obtain or receive information about the actual travel details or additional financial transactions of an individual from authentic sources and it is a misconception that they are snooping on the social media platform.

The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) is the policy-making organization for the IT department

The CBDT Chairman also mentioned that the Board has set up an advanced data analytics system that mines and brings out a lot of figures and information to understand which sectors must be taxed and where could relief be extended.

The tax department has called this new system as 'Project Insight', as it furnishes 360-degree profiling as well as insight into a corporation's complete transactions trail.

The tax department, supported by such systems, is at present working to start an SMS-based service where an individual would be intimated about at least 18 different types of transactions they have carried out above a certain threshold of money. This is to encourage a non-adversarial regime among the taxman and the taxpayer. The department would just inform the individual that they know that what a particular individual has undertaken such and such transactions and henceforth that individual must mention these while filing their income tax returns (ITRs) and also pay taxes, if applicable.

Also, the tax department has just launched the pre-filled ITRs for some class of taxpayers. It is intended to simplify tax compliance for taxpayers.

The CBDT Chairman has stated that they are working on to make things easy as well as work as an accountant for the taxpayer by means of keeping a record and giving an automated account of their transactions. The department gets this information from third party entities like banks, mutual funds, credit card corporations, sub-registrar and it is recommended that individuals must re-check this information before submitting the return as there can be chances of discrepancies to creep in at the time of furnishing of this data.

In the budget 2019, the government has made ITR filing compulsory for high spenders even if their taxable income is less than the threshold exemption limit of Rs 5 lakh.

Those mandated for filing returns consist of individuals spending above Rs 2 lakh on a foreign trip or depositing Rs 1 crore in a year in a bank account or paying the electricity bill of above Rs 1 lakh in a year.

The CBDT chairman expressed the concern and stated these measures were introduced and implemented after data analytics found that high spenders, who are earning above Rs 2 lakh on a foreign trip or depositing Rs 1 crore, were most likely not filing their returns.

The CBDT chairman stated the concern that the purpose is towards creating a tax compliant society where the honest taxpayer is honored as well as respected and the tax evader faces the law.

The CBDT chairman held that through this intention that the government, as well as the CBDT,  has decided in the direction of guide in the regime of anonymized assessment where the taxpayer and the assessing officer would not meet one another other and the entire tax proceeding shall be conducted online. The infrastructure for faceless assessment has already been provided. But it might require some kind of an augmentation which would definitely be implemented.



eStartIndia Team

Leave a Comment

Previous Comments

Related Blogs