In a proactive move to tackle the surge in cryptocurrency-related illegal activities, India’s Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) is designing Cryptocurrency Intelligence and Analysis Tool (CIAT). The aim is to keep a constant vigil on the dark net, and identify and monitor cryptocurrency wallet addresses involved in transactions. It will automatically trigger alerts whenever it detects unusual or irregular crypto activity.
The Indian Cyber Crime Coordination Centre, an initiative of the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) dedicated to combating cybercrime through research, training, forensics, and investigation, is overseeing the implementation of this project.
CIAT is poised to serve as a multifunctional tool with the primary objective of consistently monitoring the dark web. It will actively identify and track cryptocurrency wallet addresses engaged in transactions, maintaining thorough records of these activities. These records will encompass crucial information such as addresses, timestamps, transaction dates, utilized exchanges, and the types of services provided.
Whenever CIAT identifies cryptocurrency activity that is unusual or irregular, it will automatically generate alerts.
Additionally, the tool will possess the capability to issue alerts when transactions occur via particular accounts displaying suspicious behavior or exceptionally high transaction volumes. This functionality will greatly bolster authorities’ capacity to respond swiftly to potential threats.
An essential aspect of CIAT’s functionality will involve establishing an extensive database that includes information on all recognized cryptocurrency exchanges across the globe, including their contact details.
This database will serve as a valuable asset for law enforcement agencies, allowing them to establish contact with these exchanges whenever necessary during their investigative efforts.
The need for CIAT’s prompt implementation is emphasized by recent statistics that highlight substantial financial losses resulting from cryptocurrency fraud.
Recently Indian finance minister Ms. Nirmala Sitharaman said in Parliament that profits amounting to INR 953.70 crore from criminal activities involving cryptocurrencies have been seized, frozen or attached under the provisions of Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002 (PMLA) and Foreign Exchange Management Act, 1999 (FEMA).
Furthermore, over the past three years, the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) has detected 38 cases where cryptocurrency was associated with narcotics-related activities.