Published on May 12th, 2016 | by Elaine Ding0
Publishing the Data Behind the Panama Papers
The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), as part of its ongoing investigation into the Panama Papers, has created the Offshore Leaks Database, a searchable and downloadable database containing 40 years of data on the business dealings of 320,000 offshore corporations associated with the Panama-based law firm Mossack Fonseca and other similar entities. Offshore corporations, also known as shell companies, have complicated, opaque ownership layers that mask the identity of the beneficiary of their transactions, making them attractive covers for tax evasion, circumventing sanctions, and other illicit financial activity. The Offshore Leaks Database contains the real identity, when available, of the beneficial owners of the offshore corporations implicated in the Panama Papers, but does not disclose personal information or raw documents such as bank accounts, email exchanges, and financial transactions.