Illicit Trade In Cryptocurrency Is Small

Written on 01/03/2018
Mike Mikkola

The US Senate Finance Committee is looking to strengthen anti-money laundering bills, including the role that cryptocurrencies occupy in AML. According to the Tax Justice Network, the US remains one of the easiest places to hide illicit money from drugs, human traffickers, and other corrupt individuals to hide illicit money.

However, according to Jennifer Flowers, deputy assistant secretary for terrorist financing and financial crimes at the U.S. Department of the Treasury, the US dollar remains the most popular currency for illicit commerce. She also said, “Although virtual currencies are used for illicit transactions, the volume is small compared to the volume of illicit activity through traditional financial services.”

Cryptocurrencies still manage to elude regulation from governments by the very nature of their anonymity. Almost all are impossible to trace without their unique identification number. While governments denigrate the use of cryptocurrencies for illicit transactions, the real reason may be that the governments aren’t receiving taxes from the proceeds, whether legal or illegal.