Two guides have been launched to help businesses avoid ransomware attack payments, and curb criminal activity linked to crypto
Australia’s financial intelligence agency, AUSTRAC, is seeking to help companies who are vulnerable.
The agency says ransomware attacks were up 15 per cent in the past year alone.
“Financial service providers need to be alert to the signs of criminal use of digital currencies, including their use in ransomware attacks,” CEO Nicole Rose says.
AUSTRAC is hoping to help businesses understand how to distinguish between criminal activity and customers using digital currencies for legitimate purposes.
The guides contain practical information to identify and report if a payment could be related to ransomware attacks, or if digital currencies are being used commit serious crimes.
Some of the crimes include money laundering, scams, or terrorism financing.
”The use of digital currencies for criminal purposes has no place in our sector.”
Blockchain Australia CEO Steve Vallas
Last year, Australia’s scam watchdog received more than 10,000 reports of cryptocurrency scams, with losses tipping over $129 million.
It’s believed criminals are increasingly turning to cryptocurrencies and NFTs to commit international crimes.
The U.S. Secret Service is also keeping a close eye on illegal practices within the sector.
Earlier this month, a Texas man pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit money laundering. He was sentenced to 46 months in a federal prison.