The rise of cyber crimes in crypto has triggered regulators to pursue practical strategies to address the concern. On April 21, the Washington-based Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released an official report on deploying four staff to South America, Asia, and Australia in mid-year to address cyber crimes in the regions.
The IRS plans to select four professionals with vast experience in cybercrime. The deployment aims at supporting IRS in attaining its long-term objective of addressing cyber crimes.
Strategies to Mitigate Cyber Crime
The IRS team will task the four representatives with roles to research cyber-related crimes battling the crypto sector. The report stated that the team of four would assess decentralized finance (DeFi) operations in Australia, Colombia, Singapore, and Germany.
In addition, the team will scrutinize crypto laundering activities that are common in off-ramping services and the provision of third-party digital assets services. In an email conversation, IRS spokesperson Carissa Cutrell revealed that the law enforcement unit plans to launch a pilot project on cybercrime.
He announced that the IRS project would involve deploying four staff to Bogota, Frankfurt, Sydney, and Singapore. The email confirmed that the pilot project would run from June to September for 120 days.
During the three months, the four are expected to support the crypto native communities to use the digital assets, including the DeFi platform, compliantly. The spokesperson announced that the IRS team would enlighten the community on tax and financial matters.
Cutrell argued that after the completion of the project, the IRS team would provide further instructions to the four staffs. Per the email, the IRS team will examine whether the four will return to the US offices or continue with the overseas mission.
Cutrell’s email urged the regulators in the four countries to cooperate with the IRS team in the upcoming exercise. The engagement between the IRS team and foreign regulators aims to uphold knowledge sharing in regulatory matters.
Also, the IRS team will join hands with overseas regulators to launch criminal investigation activities. Commenting on Cutrell’s email, the special agent of the IRS-Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI) and head of cyber crime department Chris Janczewski argued that the overseas mission would support conducting global investigations.
He confessed that the presence of the IRS team in a foreign country would expedite the investigation process.
Factors Contributing to Increase in Cyber Crime
Janczewski announced that the pilot project would strengthen cooperation with foreign law enforcers since it requires minimal travel. He confirmed that the IRS team had advanced training in conducting investigations, including practical approaches to collect data, present facts, and conform with the legal requirements.
In his previous project, Janczewski successfully led a forensic team to investigate an illegal “Welcome to Video” website associated with child abuse. His commendable achievement projected his career to land to new opportunities as the head of the international investigation at TRM Labs.
While transitioning to a high-pay salary level, Janczewski observed different approaches to obtaining evidence in foreign countries. Despite Janczewski’s proposed guidelines, he emphasized that acquiring critical information to support the evidence is necessary for investigation.
Citing requirements for early-stage investigations, Janczewski restated the need for watchdog agencies to collaborate with foreign investigators.
IRS Collaboration with Foreign Law Enforcement Unit
Over the past, the IRS-CI has observed international landmark regulations when engaging in investigative processes. The strategies implemented by the IRS-CI enabled the law enforcers to wind down the operations of AlphaBay, which had specialized in drug trafficking and hacking activities.
The AlphaBay scandal subjected the its administrators to face legal proceedings submitted by the IRS-CI. In their previous projects, the IRS-CI team excelled in bringing down the largest website that supported child abuse in 2019.
The team has also arrested criminals who stole US social security numbers (SSN). Examining the long list of IRS-CI remarkable achievements revealed that the team has succeeded in supporting the compliance of the International Revenue Code (IRS) and other financial laws within and outside America.
Based on the investigation requirements, the IRS team is compelled to engage other foreign cyber investigators. Since 2021 the IRS has worked with the Hague Netherlands and the Europol Department of the criminal investigation.
Speaking at a Chainalysis event on April 4, the IRS executive director of international global operations, Guy Ficco revealed that IRS collaborates with other foreign law enforcement units to mitigate tax and financial crime. Ficco announced that the engagement with The Hague and Europol had yielded positive outcomes in the ongoing fight against financial crimes.
With the partnership, the IRS-CI team conducts international and local investigations more effortlessly. In 2022 the IRS-CI team confessed that international agencies offers extended support in obtaining foreign evidence and assembling the witnesses for litigation purposes.