Indians With Offshore Accounts Unnerved Due To Data hack at Appleby
This leak is true is likely to reveal the structure of trusts, and shareholdings and directorship of companies with accounts in tax havens such as Bahamas, Bermuda and Virgin Islands
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Over the weekend, many Indians including some based abroad woke up to the news of data hack at Appleby. They were alerted that their confidential financial information has been compromised due to the data theft at the premier law firm.
This hack could potentially unleash a series of information on offshore companies and bank accounts similar to the Panama papers. Funds are parked in the company’s bank accounts in multiple tax havens. Chances are that the leak will lead to an expose of tax evaders and hidden wealth of individuals who had transferred funds to tax havens like the Bahamas, Virgin Islands etc.
In case of a positive confirmation of the hack by Appleby, the authorities will have to deal with multiple names. However, it could still take a long time to bring the actual persecutors to book. The tax authorities in India are especially in for a hard time as the law does facilitate prosecuting Non-Resident Indians especially in the case of off shore accounts.
Firms like Mossack Fonseca and Appleby assist clients in structuring financial arrangements. They also take care of regulatory requirements as and when the need arises.
Just in the preceding month, Appleby confirmed they received enquiries from the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists [ICIJ] and media organisations about “documents that journalists claim to have seen and involve allegations made against our business and the business conducted by some of our clients,” confirming they had a “data security incident last year.”