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  • The United States Department of Justice just announced the publication of cryptocurrency enforcement framework.
  • The Framework will provide a ‘comprehensive overview’ of all the risks and threats associated with cryptocurrencies.

According to the official release, the Framework is the first major step to regulate cryptocurrencies. The Department of Justice has built regulatory partners around the world to solve the current issues with cryptocurrencies. FBI Director Christopher Wray stated:

At the FBI, we see first-hand the dangers posed when criminals bend the important technological promise of cryptocurrency to illicit ends. As this Enforcement Framework describes, we see criminals using cryptocurrency to try to prevent us from ‘following the money’ across a wide range of investigations, as well as to trade in illicit goods like criminal tools on the dark web. For example, the cyber criminals behind ransomware attacks often use cryptocurrency to try to hide their true identities when acquiring malware and infrastructure, and receiving ransom payments. The men and women of the FBI are constantly innovating to keep pace with the evolution of criminals’ use of cryptocurrency.

The Enforcement Framework will consist of three parts. The first is a detailed introduction of all the threats associated with digital currencies. The second will explore all the legal and regulatory tools governments can use to stop the illicit use of cryptocurrencies. 

Finally, the third part will be a discussion, particularly focused on business models that are based on cryptocurrencies, like exchanges or casinos. 

Beth A. Williams, Assistant Attorney General for the Office of Legal Policy, stated: 

The Department of Justice is committed to protecting the public from current and emerging cyber threats, including those involving cryptocurrency and related technologies.  This Framework reflects the Department’s extensive cooperation with domestic and international partners in ensuring that we are adequately addressing these challenges, to the benefit of lawful cryptocurrency users and the public at large.