United States Attorney General William Barr says the recent release of the Cryptocurrency Enforcement Framework will help law enforcement agencies combat elements that use digital currencies for illegal purposes. The framework created by the AG's Cyber-Digital Task Force provides law enforcement agencies with a “comprehensive overview of the emerging threats and enforcement problems associated with the increasing spread and use of cryptocurrency”.
The release of the framework comes as US regulators increased the pressure as Bitmex and John McAfee executives are the latest victims of the new approach. Still, senior US officials, including FBI Director Christopher Wray, are paying tribute to this revolutionary technology, which they believe is important and promising.
In his remarks, Wray points out that the new enforcement framework is only aimed at people who facilitate illegal trading in cryptocurrencies.
"At the FBI, we see firsthand the dangers that arise when criminals bend the important technological promise of cryptocurrency for illegal purposes," says Wray. The director explains that employees of his agency have determined that "criminals are (now) using cryptocurrency to prevent us from tracking the money in a variety of investigations."
Cryptocurrencies are preferred when transacting illegal goods sold on the internet. In addition, ransomware criminals also prefer paying cryptocurrencies as they find it difficult to track.
Meanwhile, a member of the Cyber-Digital Task Force, Brian C. Rabbitt, is again praising cryptocurrencies and blockchain, saying that they "represent a tremendous promise for the future." However, Rabbitt is still rejuvenating this positive view of cryptocurrencies by adding that "it is important that these important innovations follow the law".
Rabbitt makes it clear that there are red lines that, if crossed, law enforcement agencies will not hesitate to respond:
While the Department of Justice (DOJ) and its partners are committed to helping the advancement of legitimate cryptocurrency technologies and uses, we will not hesitate to enforce the laws governing these technologies to protect the public if necessary.
Another member of the task force, Beth A. Williams, praised the publication of the Cryptocurrency Enforcement Framework, which reflects the DOJ's extensive collaboration with national and international partners. Williams concludes that this collaboration "should benefit legitimate cryptocurrency users and the public at large."
In the document, the DOJ sees the use of anonymity-enhancing cryptocurrencies (AECs) such as Monero, Zcash and Dash as a "high-risk activity that indicates possible criminal behavior".
Unsurprisingly, the DOJ also says that blender and tumbler operators “may be criminally liable for money laundering because those services are specifically designed to hide the nature, location, source, ownership, or control of a financial transaction or to disguise. "
Despite the publication of the enforcement framework, the DOJ recognizes the importance of working with agencies and international partners to improve an already rigorous enforcement plan.
Do you think the DOJ's cryptocurrency enforcement framework will help reduce illegal activity? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.
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BitMex, Christopher Wray, Cryptocurrency Regulation, Dash, DOJ, FBI, John McAfee, John Mcefee Arrested, Monero, Ransomware Attack, United States Attorney General, William Barr, Zcash
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