This page provides information on registering for and accessing the Digital service providers' File transfer test facility (the test facility). The test facility allows you to validate or test a file for submitting to the ATO via the ATO portals.
Find out more:
- Register for the test facility
- Access the test facility
- Using the File transfer test facility (PDF, 265KB)
- Check production portal system status
Non-ASCII character translation conversion list
As BDE cannot process non-ASCIIs characters, a find and replace solution was deployed into production in December 2015.
- When a file has been accepted by BDE - prior to the validation process - the translation and conversion process runs.
- This non-ASCII character pre-check runs against a defined list of special characters.
- If a conversion is required, a notification that a specific record has be changed due to the detection of a non-ASCII character is communicated back to the user as a warning message in the validation report.
Previously, clients not lodging reports and forms through the ATO portals either used the Electronic Commerce Interface (ECI) or sent lodgments via physical media. Physical media is no longer accepted and ECI closed in December 2019.
Online lodgment services are available to businesses and intermediaries through the file transfer function in the Business Portal and Online services for agents. These online services can be accessed using myGovID and RAM .
Future evolutionary steps to support ATO's online strategic channels include:
- introducing new interactions and file formats to support Super Reform and other government initiatives
- extending the range of bulk services available through SBR-enabled business management software.
Digital service providers should not use the portals to test files (portal access is provided for your business interactions with the ATO as a taxpayer.
A test facility has been provided to digital service providers. Login is via a user Id and password.
Note: The test facility supports the latest versions of the specifications for testing purposes. It cannot be used to make lodgments to the ATO.
To obtain a user ID and password for the test facility complete the File transfer test facility registration form.
The same validation process will be executed for files lodged via the test facility as for lodgments via the portals.
To test a file:
- prepare the files using your software in accordance with the published file specifications
- log in to the test facility using your user Id and password
- submit your file to the ATO, where it will be checked for format compatibility and data quality
- confirm the file has been uploaded by viewing the transfer history while the file is validated for errors and warnings in the background
- download a validation report confirming the data is in a valid format or detailing any errors found.
For more information on how clients can lodge and test their files through our secure online portals see:
New files will typically be available for testing by digital service providers through the file transfer test facility some weeks or months ahead of when the files are made available to clients through our portals.
For a full list of files which can be lodged through Online Services for Agents or the Business Portal refer to File transfer.
Subscribe to 'Online Services' to receive free email updates and be notified of updates to the file transfer function.
For support in the use of test facility, including password reset:
- email ATOBulkDataTransfer@ato.gov.au
- phone (02) 6216 4004 between 8.30am and 4.30pm, Monday to Friday AEST.