Australia’s police department has formed a special unit to work on expanding their crypto knowledge and monitoring cryptocurrency transactions. According to Monday’s issue of the Australian Financial Review, the Australian Federal Police (AFP) has formed a dedicated crypto division to handle the monitoring of cryptocurrency transfers.
Australia’s law enforcement agencies are working to improve crypto-tracking capabilities.
According to AFP’s Stefan Jerga, the use of crypto assets in criminal operations has increased dramatically since the agency’s first crypto seizure at the beginning of 2018. In response, as Jerga points out, AFP has chosen to convene an enthusiastic crypto group in August.
The AFP has paid more than usual attention to the unlawful crypto transactions, resulting in the seizure of a larger amount of criminal assets than was anticipated. Two years ahead of schedule, the AFP reported Monday that they had successfully seized nearly $600 million from illicit activities related to finance.
The first target date was 2024, and it was set by the Criminal Assets Confiscation Taskforce (headed by AFP). Approximately $380M in commercial and residential property, approximately $200M in bank accounts and cash, $35M in cryptocurrency, luxury items, artworks, aircraft, yachts, and automobiles have been seized since February of 2020. However, it stands to reason that if greater focus were given, new discoveries would emerge.
Questions for AUSTRAC The Completely Open Nature of Cryptographic Funds Transfers
According to AFP’s boss, the capacity to monitor crypto transfers across blockchains is just as important as, say, ensuring the safety of children or the nation’s infrastructure. Earlier this year, a representative from Australia’s Transaction Reports and Analysis Center (AUSTRAC) expressed doubts about the openness of cryptocurrencies.
The deputy CEO of AUSTRAC, John Moss, argued that the anonymity, speed, and worldwide reach of crypto had attracted criminals, including neo-Nazi groups. However, contrary to popular belief, Bitcoin (BTC) transactions are not anonymous and can be traced in full detail using blockchain explorers.
Despite the fact that it is technically possible to maintain a Bitcoin wallet anonymously, greater challenges are being experienced while carrying out anonymous Bitcoin transfers because the transfers are very commonly associated with the Know Your Customer data of the consumers.