04-Aug-2017

This is how I-T department is using data analytics to catch tax evaders


It’s not unusual to form an investment company for buying an expensive residential apartment. But in the case of a city Golf Link Road apartment, the ultimate beneficiary was found to be director in an investment company —living in a modest house in Seelampur, earning less than Rs 1 lakh a year and not owning a car or a credit card. Income-tax officials suspected it to be a benami transaction, a property bought by a businessman in his driver’s name. Uncovering the culprit would take them through a confounding maze of data — phone records, credit card and PAN details, tax returns and even social media platforms. Here’s where data analysts and number crunchers come into play. “It’s virtually impossible to go through various structured and unstructured data sources and make sense of them,” said an official. “But data collected via various sources leaves a pattern and analytics can raise red flags that tax officers can investigate further.”

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