By Chioma Iruke
Chairman of Nigeria’s anti-graft agency, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Abdulrasheed Bawa, has said Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies presage huge risks to the world economy.
According to him, many criminals now play significant roles in crypto-currency markets, and virtual currencies had become their preferred medium of exchange.
The EFCC chairman spoke at the 38th Cambridge International Symposium on Economic Crime, themed, ‘Economic Crime-Who pays and who should pay?’
A statement by the EFCC spokesman, Wilson Uwujaren, stated that the event was organized by the Centre for International Documentation on Organized and Economic Crime, Jesus College, University of Cambridge, United Kingdom.
“The developments in new technologies and the growth of cryptocurrencies portray a far greater danger to the world economy than ever before with many criminals playing significant roles in crypto-currency markets.
“Criminals now elect to transact or receive illegal monies (such as ransom money) for cyber-attacks in cryptocurrencies with Bitcoins and Ethereum as the most commonly used mediums for these exchanges,” Bawa was quoted as saying.
He lamented that the sophistication and complexity that defines the dynamics of economic crime in the 21st Century continues to evolve, spurred by technological advancement in the global economy that has become borderless and transnational.
This he said had “inevitably led to the prioritization of law enforcement action on crimes that drive Illicit Financial Flows across the globe”.