Cryptocurrency crimes on the horizon for Thailand
The incidence of high crime in Thailand, especially those related to cryptocurrencies is expected to skyrocket according to a study that focused on illegal and cross-border organised crime.
The study was carried out by the Thailand Institute of Justice (TJI), and the UN Interregional Crime and Justice Research Institute and reported by the national newspaper The Phuket News.
Money Laundering, identification theft and forgery, drug smuggling and other crimes of intellectual property which can all be facilitated through the use of cryptocurrency are featured prominently in the study by TJI.
The list did not explicitly mention cryptocurrency but citied that an important necessity for enabling the aforementioned crime is a strong, universal, anonymous and secure medium and mode of payment, which several cryptocurrencies boast.
TJI and the UN Interregional Crime and Justice Research Institute have mentioned the use of digital currencies for several illicit activities like buying child pornography, ransoms, illegal drug trade, sale of ammunition and other high crimes on the renowned dark web. Over 6 billion cybercrime cases have been recorded in Thailand, according to the UNODC.
A seminar, outlining the issue at hand, was recently held by TJI and UNODC entitled, “Advancing the Economy and Combating Crime in the Digital Age: Cryptocurrency and Crime.” The seminar shed light on how prepared the country was for a severe cybercrime attack and areas which need improvements to combat an imminent cyber threat.
Deputy Prime Minister and Justice Minister Prajin Jungtong reinforced the notion saying that a cybercrime committee has been set up to tackle such a threat although the technical infrastructure is fairly weak. TJI’s executive director, Kittipong Kittayark, another speaker at the event mentioned that Thailand needs to develop innovations that can handle digital crimes.
Thailand came out with a new set of regulations back in June 2018 for the digital sphere with laws concerning cryptocurrencies, ICOs and licensing fees for the market players. These sets of progressive pieces of law attracted a huge amount of interest from several entities in the field and the same approach could bear well for Thailand in dealing with the increased threat from malicious crypto-users.
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