The FBI is investigating 130 crypto cases
Virtual currency transactions can be difficult to track, due to anonymity and the way they’re structured.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has revealed that it currently has 130 different open cases pertaining to cryptocurrency-related crimes, owing to an escalation in illicit activity financed by digital currencies.
FBI supervisory special agent Kyle C. Armstrong reported the figures during a discussion at the Crypto Evolved conference examining the institutional crypto trading market, held at the The New York Athletic Club this week.
Bloomberg reported that the domestic intelligence and security service of the United States has “threat tagged” cryptocurrency cases which involve offences ranging from illicit drug sales and ransomware attacks to more severe crimes such as kidnapping and human trafficking.
However, these digital currency-related cases only represent a small proportion of all open investigations.
“There are thousands of cases in the bureau, so it is a small sliver at this point,” Armstrong said.
Cryptocurrencies are inextricably linked to drug trafficking, particularly the ongoing opioid epidemic. Armstrong said one in ten (10%) buyers seeking narcotics utilize illegal online marketplace, the “dark web”.
Armstrong added that the bureau has seen a rise in cryptocurrency extortion cases in the southwest of the US.
Virtual currency transactions can be difficult to track, due to the ways in which assets are structured and privacy-enhancing features which allow for anonymity, unlike traditional fiat currency banking systems.
A new survey aimed at better understanding how people around the world feel about cryptocurrency has discovered that a significant proportion of Americans are eager to buy into the new wave of digital currencies.
However, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) recently revealed that US consumers will lose more than $3 billion by the end of the year to cryptocurrency scammers, schemes and deceptive mining machines.
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