The IRS Criminal Investigation Cyber Crimes Unit is waging a battle against the use of cryptocurrency for financing terrorists and other money-laundering activities. Agents Chris Janczewski and Jon Gebhart describe recent cryptocurrency-related takedowns.
The Treasury Department has fined the owner of two bitcoin "mixing" sites $60 million for violating anti-money laundering laws. It's the first time the department's Financial Crimes Enforcement Network has issued a civil monetary penalty against the operator of a cryptocurrency site.
A international law enforcement operation involving 16 countries has resulted in the arrest of 20 individuals suspected of belonging to the QQAAZZ criminal network, which helped launder cash and cryptocurrency for other cybercriminals.
What will be the impact of the leak of investigatory documents from FinCEN - the U.S. Treasury Department's Financial Crimes Enforcement Network? For starters, experts warn that FinCEN reports may reveal sensitive information tied to banks and law enforcement agencies' investigatory tools and tactics.
Cybercriminals still prefer to use "money mules" and drug trafficking to launder money tied to their bank hacking activities rather than cryptocurrency transactions, according to a report from SWIFT, which handles intra-bank financial transactions.
The U.S. Justice Department has filed a civil forfeiture complaint in an effort to recover millions in cryptocurrency from 280 accounts that allegedly was stolen by North Korean hackers. Prosecutors believe much of the money was laundered through Chinese exchanges.
Police have confiscated $90 million from a company allegedly owned by Alexander Vinnik, who is accused of money laundering and defrauding individuals through BTC-e, a cryptocurrency exchange he controlled.
The State Department is offering a $5 million reward for information about North Korean-sponsored hacking campaigns, according to an advisory released this week by several U.S. agencies about the ongoing threat these campaigns pose to financial institutions and others.
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Police in the United Kingdom have arrested six suspects as part of a money laundering investigation tied to the February 2019 theft of $14 million from one of Malta's largest banks. Officials say malware-wielding attackers moved money to accounts in the U.S., U.K., Czech Republic and Hong Kong.
Cybercriminals are using increasingly sophisticated methods to turn illicitly gained cryptocurrency into cash, which raises new concerns about enforcing anti-money laundering laws, according to a report by Chainalysis.