In statements made during his recent visit to Australia, Neil Wals, chief of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime Global Cybercrime Program, warned about the difficulties that cryptocurrencies have created to combat crimes such as money laundering, cybercrime and terrorist financing.
According to Wals, criminals also include global networks of child sexual exploitation; he believes that these networks are more widespread than much of the public thinks. Besides, Wals said that the layer of secrecy provided by the use of crypto makes criminal operations easier.
These statements comes few weeks after that Treasury Secretary, Steve Mnuchin, expressed in July the intentions of the government agencies to prevent cryptocurrencies from becoming an equivalent of bank accounts in Switzerland; ergo, in a resource used by criminals that offers security and discretion.
However, Danny Scott, CEO of CoinCorner, also said in July that Bitcoin’s usage by criminals is in the past, taking as example the sentencing of the CEO of the now extinct darknet marketplace Silk Road. He also added that cryptocurrencies are not a proper tool for illegal transactions.
Besides, the latest research by Chainalysis, a blockchain analysis firm, of all crypto assets sent to cryptocurrency mixers, only 8.1% are related to illegal activities, and 2.7% comes from darknet markets.