Will the IRS Make Tech Majors Reveal Their Users’ Crypto Activities Online?

By Rushali Shome

According to a Twitter user, the United States’ Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is apparently mulling over the possibility of requiring tech majors to provide reports on how their users carry out crypto-related activities. The Twitter user cited a presentation that is supposedly from the IRS to explain the same.

As per the documents that were shared by the Twitter user, the IRS is apparently planning to issue Grand Jury subpoenas to major tech companies such as Apple, Microsoft and Google to go through their users’ (US taxpayers) browsing and download history to check to what extent they had been using crypto transactions and crypto-oriented applications.

Laura Walter, a certified public accountant and crypto tax specialist, known as the Crypto Tax Girl, tweeted the supposed presentation. Apparently, the presentation was meant for agents working as a part of the IRS Criminal Investigation Division.

Walter cited the given document to suggest that the tax authorities are planning to conduct a thorough investigation into criminal tax invasions by crypto users. Apparently, according to Walter, the watchdog is mulling over the idea of having interviews, social media and open source searches, and electronic surveillance.

A section from the attached document reads as follows:

“Grand Jury Subpoena should be considered for Apple, Google, and Microsoft for the Subject’s complete application download history. Each application’s function should be explored to determine whether or not the application can transmit, or otherwise allow, transactions in bitcoin.”

The Twitter user explained at the end of her thread:

“There is a ton of other information in there about crypto in general, tracing transactions via the blockchain, limitations of the blockchain, etc. but what you need to know is that the IRS is working HARD to identify criminal tax cases involving cryptocurrency.”

Only time will tell if this source is legitimate and whether the IRS will really carry out this move, but as of now, the interesting possibility remains that the tax authorities will go through with this plan without alerting the taxpayers.

Rushali Shome

Rushali Shome is a history undergraduate with a keen interest in puns, politics and beyond. When not typing away furiously in the “Notes” section of her phone, she can be found trying to catch the eye of servers at restaurants or weddings for a second helping.

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