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US Government Working on Crypto Strategy

Rod Rosenstein, deputy attorney general of the US, said on Tuesday that the government was working on a “comprehensive strategy” around cryptocurrencies.

At the Financial Services Roundtable's spring conference this week, Rosenstein was asked about his views on cryptocurrency and cybercrime during a question and answer session. He remarked on a new cybercrime task force revealed last week by the Justice Department that will develop a strategy around crimes involving the tech.

He added that, “A lot of these schemes involve bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies which do not flow through the traditional financial system. What we're working on now with our cybercrime task force is a working on a comprehensive strategy to deal with that.”

Rosenstein also dispelled the notion that cryptocurrencies are anonymous - they are rather pseudonymous - and added that the money laundering process does leave a trail for the Federal Bureau of Investigation to follow.

He said, “We all know there are ways to trace criminal activity. Generally speaking, it's not just about cyberactivity, there will be other ways that people will leave trails. Ultimately, even when dealing with cybercurrency, they're going to want to convert, launder it into physical currency, and so there are ways to trace these operations.”

He admitted that having law enforcement employees up to date with strategies for following the trails and how the tech works can be a challenge, in order to “make sure we have the agents and the prosecutors with the skills and the expertise.” He went on to conclude that the criminals will always be “one step ahead.”

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