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France employs AI to sniff out tax evading pools

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Officials from the French government have relied on software developed by Google, and a consulting firm, Capgemini, to discover 20,356 pools deliberately left undisclosed by the owners for avoiding taxes.

Officials from the French government have employed an artificial intelligence (AI) software developed by Google and a consulting firm, Capgemini, to discover 20,356 pools deliberately left undisclosed by the owners for avoiding taxes.

The software uses artificial intelligence (AI) tech to evaluate satellite imagery to spot out the boundaries of swimming pools, which are then compared against public property records.

So far, the use of the software has enabled additional tax collection over the past year worth $10 million in nine regions of the country. Given the successful results, the government will extend the use of the software in other areas of the country.

Because properties with pools see an appreciation in their overall value in the real estate market, the French government subjects swimming pools to taxation, and owners are required to file a tax report within 90 days of the pool’s completion to let its existence be known.

Reports have shown if the government continues the use of the AI software, it could generate another $40 million in taxation in the year 2023.

The demand for swimming pools jumped overall in Europe during the coronavirus pandemic, when the populations of the nations were subjected to staying under quarantine, and has remained strong throughout the summer, since the continent has experienced some of its hottest temperatures on record.

France has especially seen a drought unlike any other in recent years, and the government had to take up measures regulating the use of swimming pools in response to water conservation demands.

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