White House Warns Against Use of Cryptocurrency in Illicit Drugs Trading
Cryptocurrency is the latest buzz word that has taken the financial world with its boom. Where, on the one hand, it helps the investors to earn huge profits, on the other ground, the virtual currency also fosters illegal transactions as well.
The supreme power of the United States, The White House, made a shocking revelation about the involvement of cryptocurrencies in the drugs market.
The esteemed dignitary, The White House, issued two official statements concerning drug purchases in the U.S. The advisories revealed the direct play of virtual currencies in the concerned transactions.
The official warnings, pointed out to both financial institutions and digital payment platforms, states that the array of ‘convertible cryptocurrencies’ namely Bitcoin, Ethereum, Monero, etc. have the potential to be used and unfortunately have been used for the unlawful purchase and sales transactions of drugs.
The advisories depict convertible virtual currencies as monies because they can be easily converted into paper currencies like the dollar.
In the report, the authorities have specifically mentioned the topic of Schedule II controlled drug, Fentanyl, which finds its entry in the U.S through Mexico and China.
According to the data of the Drug Enforcement Agency, Fentanyl is 80 to 100 times stronger drug than morphine.
The advisory disclosed that “An analysis of sensitive financial data indicates that domestic illicit drug manufacturers, dealers, and consumers use online payment platforms or [convertible virtual currency] to purchase precursor chemicals or completely synthesized narcotics primarily sourced from China.”
The joint effort of the unveiling of the advisories by the White House in collaboration with other government agencies is a positive step to curb the Fentanyl proliferation.
In this effort, the agencies took into consideration different payment methods used by the drug traders, including virtual currencies.
The shutdown of the dark market AlphaBay by the U.S in July 2017, finds its mention in the reports as a major step in stopping the connection between illegal substances and virtual currencies.
A part of the advisories also throws light on the methods of tracking and discovery payments for illegal products, used by the concerned authorities to control the transactions. It describes the use of CVCs like digital wallets, IP addresses as well as transaction hashes.
The U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) recently also booked and blacklisted three Chinese nationals involved in money laundering and drug smuggling.