Cybercrime is a particularly difficult scourge to combat due to the perpetual ingenuity of those who engage in it. Their proficiency in the matter is only improving as technology evolves and gives birth to applications like cryptocurrency. The latter now allows them to resell stolen checks from letterboxes discreetly on the Internet. This is notably revealed by a recent investigation by David Maimon, associate professor of criminal justice and criminology at Georgia State University.
Resurgence of a former fraud facilitated by the internet and cryptocurrencies
The investigation carried out by Professor Maimon aimed to find out what was going wrong in preventing cybercrime. So he put together a team that monitored for two years 60 black market communication channels on the internet to learn more about the online fraud ecosystem. The research team thus realized that there was an upsurge in the trade in stolen checks from US postal services and personal mailboxes. This finding may seem surprising at a time when the vast majority of transactions are carried out electronically and the use of checks continues to decline.
However, researchers will make another discovery that helps explain the comeback of this ancient fraud. These include the use of cryptocurrencies as currency of exchange in transactions between cybercriminals and the acquirers of the stolen checks. Professor Maimon rightly points out that check theft had already experienced a previous boom in the early days of internet use. Technology then made it easier for criminals to find potential customers for their illicit articles. With the emergence of cryptocurrencies, they now have the ability to conduct anonymous transactions.
The use of digital payments as the only solution
To curb the evil, Professor Maimon and his team simply called on American citizens to stop sending checks in the mail. They suggest that they use digital payments to secure their funds even though he recognizes that these also involve risks.
” Bank chequing accounts typically offer customers the option of sending money electronically for free, whether to a friend or to a business. There are also many apps and other services that allow you to make digital payments from your bank accounts or by credit card. Said Mr. Maimon.
Stolen check fraud is therefore added to the list of crimes associated with cryptocurrency after money laundering, terrorist financing, or even ransomware. Ironically, the adoption of cryptocurrencies as a means of payment is one of the best weapons to eradicate this fraud.
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Luc Jose Adjinacou
Far from having dampened my enthusiasm, an unsuccessful investment in 2017 in some crypto only increased my enthusiasm. I therefore resolved to study and understand blockchain and its many uses and to relay information relating to this ecosystem with my pen.