The Financial Crime Enforcement Network (FinCEN) has listed “cybercrime, including related cybersecurity and virtual currency considerations” as a national priority. In particular, the Ministry of Finance is concerned about “abusing virtual assets, exploiting and destroying their innovative potential, including money laundering through illegal proceeds”.

FinCEN, a subsidiary of the U.S. Department of the Treasury, released the National Priorities for Anti-Money Laundering and Combating the Financing of Terrorism last week.

One of the priorities listed is “cybercrime, including related cybersecurity and virtual currency considerations.” File details:

The Ministry of Finance pays special attention to network-supported financial crimes, ransomware attacks, and the misuse of virtual assets to exploit and undermine their innovative potential, including money laundering through illegal proceeds.

The document added: “The fight against ransomware has been identified as the top priority of the United States.” The document pointed out that one of the strategies developed to combat ransomware attacks is to “achieve fast tracking and interception of virtual currency revenue.”

FinCEN writes that convertible virtual currency (CVC) “has become the currency of choice for various online illegal activities.”

The bureau elaborated: “When conducting transactions involving CVC, criminals will use a variety of techniques to cover up the source of illegal funds, including the use of mixers and tumblers.”

In June, President Joe Biden issued a directive to federal agencies to prioritize efforts to tackle global anti-corruption, with cryptocurrency being a priority. The Biden administration also announced a strategy to combat ransomware, which includes expanding cryptocurrency analysis to detect criminal transactions.

What do you think of FinCEN’s listing of the abuse of cryptocurrency as a national priority? Let us know in the comments section below.

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