According to a top-level US Secret Service (USSS) officer, the agency can follow the transfer of Bitcoin (BTC) and other cryptocurrencies in the same way that email addresses do. Since 2015, the FBI has seized more than $102 million in bitcoin in 254 incidents, according to the source.
According to David Smith, the USSS assistant director, because to the transparency and irreversible nature of blockchain ledgers, investigators can track crypto transactions simpler than fiat money transactions in some situations.
Smith claims that:
When you follow a digital currency wallet, it’s the same as following an email address with certain associated identifiers. When a person and another person perform a transaction that is recorded in the blockchain, we can follow that email address or wallet address and track it via the blockchain.
Smith went on to state that “one of the governing concepts of the blockchain is that it is a shared public record that anybody with a little bit of processing power has access to, including law enforcement.”
According to Agent Smith, agents and analysts working out of the Secret Service’s Global Investigative Operations Center (GIOC) in Washington, D.C., have confiscated more than $100 million in bitcoin from cybercriminals.
There are several instances in which cryptocurrency gets taken. In one such case, an Estonian guy was involved in 13 worldwide ransomware assaults. In March, the individual was apprehended with $1.7 million in Bitcoin, and the Estonian-based cybercriminal was sentenced to 66 months in jail.
Other examples include the takedown of an international money laundering enterprise located in Romania, as well as a Russian cybercriminal ring engaging in ransomware.