Technology can be used in many ways. It can be used for good causes as well as harmful purposes. The same thing is happening with crypto as well. On the one hand, it can potentially solve many problems in our existing financial system. On the other hand, it readily becomes the go-to means for fraudsters and scamsters. In fact, since the advent of Bitcoin, there have been several incidents in which crypto was used to cheat people.
Now, the governments of all nations know it very well, and they’re trying to clamp down on such incidents too. The US Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has pulled up its socks to fight crypto-based cybercrime across the globe. They’re all set to roll out a pilot program that sends cybercrime experts to four continents- Asia, Europe, South America, and Australia.
How is the US IRS Combating Crypto-Based Cybercrime Globally?
The head of IRS Criminal Investigation, Jim Lee, said the move aims to bring all the central cybercrime-combat units on the same page. It focuses on sharing the know-how and tools US experts use with the world. He said that we’ll be able to efficiently fight cybercrime only when all the nations are technologically equipped.
Disclosing information on locations, he said that the four attaches would be sent to Sydney, Bogota, Frankfurt, and Singapore. The cybercrime experts will finish a 120-day training with their counterparts in these locations. The focus points in these training sessions will be peer-to-peer payments, decentralized finance, mixing services, and crimes involving cryptocurrency.
The four experts are Stacey Perez, who specialises in money laundering crimes; David Strager, an expert in investigating cryptocurrency tax evasion; Cuong Ly, proficient in crypto exchange fraud; and Peter Dickerman, a senior analyst in the IRS’ Digital Forensics. So far, the IRS has only been associated with a foreign investigative body once. It sent one cyber investigator to The Hague, Netherlands.
But now, with cybercrimes going rife across the globe, IRS is making its endeavour global. Chris Janczewski, a former special agent in IRS-CI Cyber Crimes Unit, said this initiative is significant. He also underlined the importance of having attaches in different countries. He further informed me that IRS has 11 attached posts right now. These are in the United Arab Emirates, Australia, the UK, the Netherlands, Germany, China, Barbados, Panama, Colombia, Canada, and Mexico.
What Challenges Exist in International Cyber Investigations and How Can They Be Addressed?
Credited for investigating the largest dark web child abuse site, Janczewski is now spearheading global cybercrime investigations at TRM Labs. He emphasized that in international cyber studies, it is essential to have good cooperation among countries. That’s because the process of obtaining information differs from country to country. Therefore, relationships between the different investigative bodies must be strengthened.
With attaches and training programs, the international community’s support will improve.