Supported by U.S. law enforcement, police in Ukraine have disrupted a network of crypto exchange services suspected of laundering criminal proceeds. The platforms were allegedly processing dirty money obtained from ransomware attacks and various fraud schemes.
Cyberpolice, US Investigators Bust Crypto Exchanges in Ukraine
Officers from Ukraine’s Cyberpolice unit and Main Investigative Department, working with the Prosecutor General’s Office, have seized nine cryptocurrency exchanges, the National Police of Ukraine announced. Representatives of the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) also took part in what Ukrainian authorities described as a “multi-level international operation.”
The web platforms offered anonymous exchange of cryptocurrencies. They were employed to facilitate the legalization of illicit funds, a press release explained. Through these exchanges, criminals channeled digital assets obtained as a result of malware attacks and online fraud. Their services were advertised on closed hacker forums.
The network’s infrastructure, located on servers in the United States, a number of European countries and Ukraine, has been blocked during the operation. Investigators are now trying to identify all individuals involved in the criminal activities.
Visitors to 24xbtc.com, 100btc.pro, pridechange.com, 101crypta.com, uxbtc.com, trust-exchange.org, bitcoin24.exchange, paybtc.pro, and owl.gold now get a message stating the the domains have been seized by law enforcement.
Ukrainian government agencies have been working to improve their expertise on crypto assets. A report revealed in March that employees of the Cyberpolice, the Asset Recovery and Management Agency, and the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) attended training classes organized by the world’s leading crypto exchange, Binance.
In November 2022, the cybercrime-combating unit dismantled a crypto fraud scheme allegedly making over $200 million a year. Its organizers lured investors through a chain of representative offices and call centers throughout Europe. A $40 million Russian crypto pyramid was taken down in April.
Do you think Ukraine will expand its cooperation with the United States in law enforcement operations in the crypto space?