Unlawful Use of Cryptos Emerges as a Threat in AU
Published: October 26, 2022
Australian Federal Police think law enforcement will need to evolve continuously to keep up with the criminals. Australia’s federal law enforcement agency says keeping up with criminals is a constant challenge.
According to an AFP spokesperson, there have been more offenders using crypto to facilitate illicit business and attempt to conceal asset ownership now than ever before
It’s worth noting that there are more than 27 million crypto owners in the US.
The AFP admitted that the most difficult challenge for law enforcement is to evolve their techniques and tools to keep up with criminals, especially as mainstream adoption of crypto grows.
The AFP established a new crypto unit last month to monitor crypto-related transactions. It’s expected since more than 100,000 Bitcoin millionaires worldwide as of 2021.
But despite the previous establishment of those units, the spokesperson stated that criminals still manage to find opportunities to exploit the public.
According to IFW Global executive chairman Ken Gamble, the AFP’s recent focus has been on cryptocurrency money laundering related to drug trafficking, hacking, ransomware, and email compromise rather than large-scale online investment fraud.
Between January and July of this year, Scamwatch data revealed that Australians had already lost 242.5 AUD )$152.6 million) to scammers in 2022. Most of those were lost to investment scams such as crypto, romance baiting, and Ponzi schemes.
One Australian private investigator thinks that some law enforcement agencies need to be fully equipped to handle cryptocurrency crime cases and need more training on how crypto functions.
According to analytics company Chainalysis, 74% of government agencies felt ill-equipped to handle crypto-related crime in July 2022. In addition, many respondents indicated that most agencies didn’t use specialized blockchain analytics tools.
Hopefully, this might change, as several national and international authorities have announced the formation of crypto-crime-focused units in 2022.
Also, Interpol recently established a special team in Singapore to assist the government in combating cybercrime. However, 81% of organizations were already affected by cybercrime in 2021.
Jürgen Stock, Interpol secretary general, stated at Interpol’s general assembly in India that crypto is a challenge because agencies aren’t adequately equipped from the start.