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FEDS TAKE DOWN ONLINE MONEY LAUNDERING SCHEME

Digital Citizens, Wednesday, May 29, 2013

There is a shadow world of online financial services that is increasingly popular with criminals looking to launder their profits. Today, there is one fewer way for this illegal money to be washed. “The premier bank for cybercriminals,” Liberty Reserve, has just been shut down.

According to the federal government, Liberty Reserve was an online bank that laundered money for drug dealers, child pornographers, and a variety of other criminals. It was a $6 billion operation that was similar to PayPal for illegal activity. On Tuesday, the federal government indicted its operators.

“We've got a lot to learn from the Liberty Reserve investigation,” said Tom Galvin, executive director of the Digital Citizens Alliance. “However, the sad news is that the next online money laundering mechanism is probably already in development right now.  We have do more than learn how to prevent the next Liberty Reserve.  We have to prevent the next organization that will evolve and become Liberty Reserve 2.0.”

Too often it is easy for another set of criminals to set up shop when law enforcement shuts down illegal activity online. Governments and businesses need to have a greater focus on making cyberspace an unwelcome place for criminal enterprises like Liberty Reserve.

For more information, please reference:

New York Times- Online Currency Exchange Accused of Laundering $6 Million

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