Identity theft and tax crime: Has technology made it easier to defraud the revenue?
The modern phenomenon of online applications and processes mean that there is greater opportunity than ever before to defraud both the revenue and others, based on identity theft. This article focuses on Strike Force Apia, a significant financial crime investigation and subsequent prosecution to identify financial crime typologies relating to the revenue and taxpayer information. The article analyses the detection of financial crime, including by technology-enabled processes, and considers how effectively existing procedural law and criminal offence legislation can facilitate detection, investigation and prosecution. The article concludes that while technology has created new opportunities to defraud the revenue, detection and investigations technology coupled with existing law surrounding the proof of data, means that appropriately resourced organisations, including the Australian Taxation Office, can counter even the more sophisticated attempts to defraud the revenue and third parties based on taxpayer information.