The US Department of homeland security (DHS) will monitor unlicensed cryptocurrency firms linked to P2P platforms, online forums, and darknet markets.
As DHS notes, these companies have long been a “serious problem for law enforcement” and the financial crime Network (FinCEN).
The new programs were announced from the budget for fiscal year 2021, which DHS published last week. In the Department there are several programs that are aimed at monitoring the activities related to the cryptocurrency. Among them is the cryptocurrency investigation Program (CIP), developed by the center for combating cash smuggling (BCSC).
“CIP is aimed at detecting unlicensed money service companies that, as independent cryptocurrency brokers, use P2P sites, online forums and darknet markets to participate in unlicensed money transfer services,” DHS said in a document on budget changes.
According to DHS, “most of these unlicensed services are engaged in laundering drug proceeds, including opioid trafficking.” Previously, the US Immigration and customs enforcement (ICE), under the auspices of DHS, has several times expressed concern about P2P platforms. The service notes that unlicensed P2P activity is a ” serious problem for law enforcement agencies.”
According to ICE, ” bitcoin and other virtual currencies are the preferred payment method in the darknet markets. Unlicensed P2P exchanges usually receive BTC from selling illegal goods and services on shadow markets.” In connection with the new initiative of the Department of homeland security ICE approves:
“The biggest problem faced by sellers of the darknet market is the conversion of virtual currency into Fiat currency. To avoid reporting requirements, illegal vendors turn to P2P exchanges or become P2P exchanges themselves to cash out their virtual currency.”
Currency exchanges, including cryptocurrency platforms, are considered money transfer services in the United States and are required to register and comply with anti-money laundering rules. According to Federal law, they must register with FinCEN as a company providing services related to money transfers.
ICE notes that the current us regulatory framework does not cover the full range of cryptocurrency transactions that are carried out illegally. At the same time, the US authorities have repeatedly brought to justice the owners of cryptocurrency firms for managing unlicensed companies that provide money transfer services.
Recall that earlier this month, a US citizen, Larry Dean Harmon, was arrested on this and a number of other charges, and last year a new Jersey resident was charged with creating an unlicensed BTC exchange.