Criminal Use of Cryptocurrency Expected to Grow, Canada’s Financial Intel Agency Says

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Canada’s financial intelligence agency says it expects to see criminals increase their use of cryptocurrency to raise, move, and hide funds outside the traditional banking system. In its newly released annual report, the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada notes it has been developing strategic intelligence on the role virtual assets play in money laundering and terrorist financing. The agency, known as Fintrac, says the most prevalent form of money laundering involving virtual currencies is the movement of proceeds of fraud, and ransomware attacks. Fintrac identifies money linked to illicit activities by electronically sifting millions of pieces of information each year from banks, insurance companies, money services businesses, securities dealers, real estate brokers, casinos and others. In turn, it discloses intelligence to police and other law-enforcement agencies about the suspected cases. Fintrac’s report warns that the use of unregistered money services businesses continues to pose challenges for those seeking to detect money laundering and terrorist financing through traditional financial channels.

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