FRA Partner Charlie Steele's comments were featured in The Telegraph sharing his insights on authorities' pressing need for resources and expertise with crypto asset activities.
As the popularity of digital currencies grows, regulators and enforcement bodies appear to be acknowledging that they need to strengthen their capabilities to deal with the threat posed by criminals, some of whom may already be steps ahead of authorities in this area. The Telegraph reported that the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) recently put out a tender seeking crypto experts to train FCA staff to better analyze blockchain data and identify criminal activity. This follows a ruling in September that marked the first time a UK court has convicted a person for using cryptocurrencies to finance terrorist activities.
Demonstrating that this trend was not unique to the UK, Charlie Steele noted that the US Treasury Department has expressed similar concerns around crypto assets in its sanctions review report (released in October). The Telegraph quoted Charlie saying that the "report noted the need for more resources, including investing in the right expertise - specifically including 'the evolving digital assets and service space'."
Read the full article here: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2021/11/28/fca-turns-bitcoin-experts-steps-fight-against-terrorists-funded/