Due to its anonymity, many believe crypto is hidden from the IRS and regulatory authorities. This is wrong. The IRS can catch transactions in various ways, even if an investor does not pull out cryptos from his digital wallet and turn them into fiat money. For this purpose, many cryptos exchanges forward a Form 1099 to the IRS, notifying them that a taxpayer individual is dealing with digital currencies. In this way, taxpayers must inform them about their tax returns. At the same time, in 2019, the IRS initiated a question about crypto in Form 1040. Although anonymity is among the reasons to use Bitcoin – the first-ever and top-notch cryptocurrency effortlessly tradable via Bitcoin Trading Software. The latest edition of the same form asks about getting, selling, interchanging, and relinquishing any financial interest in any digital currency during the current year. If we talk about illegal acts, the IRS can also utilize blockchain analytics mechanisms, attempting to fake wallets to real people indulged in those activities.

Can The IRS Track Cryptos?

The current suggestion from FinCEN will enable the government to trace digital currencies conveniently. This proposal will influence cryptos in crypto wallets, and those kept on crypto exchanges like Coinbase. For instance, if an individual transfers a large amount of cryptocurrency to his crypto wallet, it will force him to notify the government that he possesses the wallet. In addition, following the current rules, crypto exchanges will also have to make a definite revelation to the government regarding customer transactions.

For instance, an exchange enabling cryptocurrency trading must report users who trade 10,000 dollars worth of cryptocurrencies daily. The United States is worried over financial delinquencies and other nefarious acts that can be carried out via cryptocurrencies. Through the details of those involved in the trade (buying & selling) or a crypto exchange, the government expects to prevent illicit activities such as human trafficking and money laundering.

Anyhow, enhanced regulations indicate that plenty of paperwork exists for firms and individuals (taxpayers) supporting crypto trading. Furthermore, if an individual or an organization does not follow new regulations, the Treasury Department can impose stiff fines on him. For instance, financial institutions can be fined daily, and individuals may also come under penalty. Although not every crypto exchange is traced yet, over time, more regulations will affect the buying and selling of crypto.

How Does The IRS Track Your Cryptocurrencies?

The IRS has used several methods to trace your crypto holdings and transactions. The IRS has the authority to sue anyone not paying taxes on his yearly crypto revenue. The IRS collects data from crypto exchanges and trading platforms to track cryptocurrencies. Transactions made on these platforms or the exchanges are disclosed to the IRS. Crypto trading exchanges/platforms often offer Form 1099-B & 1099-K. If you get any of these Forms, the IRS will be notified about your cryptocurrency transactions. Additionally, if you have more than 600 dollars in crypto income, you will get Form 1099-K, which will reveal your monthly crypto income.

Crypto exchanges must send this form to users who comply with the requirements. Meanwhile, the IRS gets a copy of the same form. When paying the taxes, if you forget to add these amounts, the IRS information processing system will point out your revenues as under-reported. Similarly, this mechanism would mark you for under-reporting in case of not report your tax revenues through Form 1099-B. Many crypto exchanges, like Binance, Coinbase, Kraken, KuCoin, Gate.io Gemini, Uphold, etc., directly report to the IRS. Therefore, if these crypto exchanges or trading platforms send you forms, it is very likely that the IRS already contains a copy. You are responsible for reporting your gains and being free of tax penalties.

Issuing Subpoenas

IRS also uses Subpoenas to examine crypto transactions. Many crypto exchanges have obtained subpoenas instructing them to disclose certain user accounts. For example, the IRS directed Coinbase to disclose information about around 13,000 accounts and details like names, NTN, places, date of birth, transaction record, statements, receipts, etc.

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Kshitij does business research and content writing for VCBay. Pursuing BBA from Symbiosis Center Of Management Studies (SCMS) Pune, he is skilled in Financial Modeling, Stock valuation and Microsoft Excel. He is passionate about Entrepreneurship and Finance.


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