FISC 2.0 – The tax administration will soon experiment with the monitoring of digital platforms. The goal? Scan your online activity for possible fraud.
The French tax administration is acquiring a new arsenal to flush out fraudsters. The tax authorities will now be able to use digital platforms to check whether the lifestyle of taxpayers corresponds to the income and assets they declare to the administration.
A decree, published on February 13 in Official newspaper, has just clarified the terms of application of Article 154 of the Finance Law for 2020, which authorizes the collection of certain data from Internet users to fight against tax and customs fraud. A practice that was previously illegal.
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The experimentation of this device, which is to last three years, should begin in the coming weeks, according to Le Figaro. This primarily concerns social networks (from Twitter to Instagram, via Facebook or YouTube) but also sites for connecting individuals, such as Airbnb, LeBonCoin or even Blablacar.
“If you have your picture taken (…) many times in a luxury car when you can’t afford it, maybe it’s your cousin or your girlfriend who has it. lent, or maybe not “, explained, in November 2018, Gérald Darmanin, then Minister of Public Accounts, in the program “Capital” of M6.
Only public content will be targeted
To carry out this hunt for fraudsters, tax officials will be able to rely on an algorithm capable of detecting certain keywords or indications of dates and places making it possible to characterize the breaches or offenses sought, specifies the decree.
This 2.0 tool will be responsible for sifting through the “content, freely accessible on the websites of online platform operators [et] clearly made public by their users “, as stipulated in article 154 of the Finance Law for 2020. In other words, anything that you exchange in private cannot be subject to administrative control.
If she recognizes that “the fight against tax fraud constitutes an objective with constitutional value”, the National Commission for Informatics and Liberties (Cnil) had warned the government, calling on the latter to “great caution” concerning this possibility which may, according to her, “undermine the rights and freedoms of the persons concerned”.
At the end of the experiment, within three years, the question of the effectiveness of this measure will arise, which, if such is the case, will probably make legislators want to perpetuate it.
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