In 254 fraud-related investigations, the US Secret Service confiscated cryptocurrency worth more than $102 million. “What thieves seek to do is muddy the waters and try to obscure their operations,” said the Secret Service’s Office of Investigations assistant director. “What we want to do is track it as rapidly as possible, as aggressively as possible, in a linear approach.”
Cryptocurrency worth $102M is Recovered by the US Secret Service
David M. Smith, a senior executive in the US Secret Service, spoke about cryptocurrency. Smith is the 28th Assistant Director of the US Secret Service Office of Investigations, where he oversees the agency’s global investigative mission, which includes 161 offices and over 3,000 people.
The Secret Service is in charge of discovering, investigating, and apprehending anyone who violates particular financial system legislation. According to its website, “in recent years, digital assets have increasingly been utilized to assist a widening range of crimes, including numerous fraud schemes and the use of ransomware.”
Secret Service personnel and analysts are actively following the flow of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies on the blockchain, Smith told the news source, adding:
It’s no different than following an email address with some associated identifiers when you follow a digital currency wallet.
“And if a person and another person execute a transaction, and that transaction is recorded in the blockchain, we have the capacity to track that email address, or wallet address, as it’s known in the industry,” the assistant director confirmed.
The Secret Service has recovered more than $102 million in cryptocurrency from criminals in connection with 254 cases of fraud-related investigations since 2015, according to information maintained by the agency, according to the outlet.
“One of the things about cryptocurrencies is that it moves money at a faster pace than the traditional format,” Smith said, emphasizing that cryptocurrency is appealing to both American customers and criminals because of its fast transaction speed. “What thieves seek to do is muddy the waters by attempting to obscure their operations,” he explained. “What we want to do is track it as rapidly as possible, as aggressively as possible, in a linear approach.”
When the Secret Service identifies illicit conduct, it seeks to “dig a little deeper into those transactions and deconstruct” it, according to the assistant director. Smith stated,
I can deconstruct and locate whatever morsels of information you used when you first registered in or joined up for that email account if you send me something terrible in an email and I know there’s some criminal behavior related to that email address.
Investigators are discovering an increasing number of thieves turning stolen BTC and other cryptocurrencies into stablecoins, according to Smith. “Because, you know, criminals are humans too,” he reasoned. They aim to avoid some of the market volatility that some of the major coins are known for.”
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