Right now, Senator Tom Carper is giving an introduction into what bitcoin can be used to buy. He mentioned buying all goods but specifically spoke of drugs, weapons, and how it can be used to exploit children.
Carper mentioned how the silk road was taken down in a joint effort by the CIA, FBI and dept. of Homeland security. WILL CONTINUE UPDATING BITCOIN TIP: public address- 1AkF4HaJrJzXVYuSxifwLUWNEwhbGv5sXu
3:10 EST: jennifer Shasky calvery
- Treasury Department - Financial Crimes Mythili Ramen
(head of the Dept. of Justic Crimnal Division) Edward Lowry
- special agent in charge of criminal investigation division
3:13 EST - jennifer Shasky calvery
statement. 'Recognizing new payment methods must keep pace with laws against money laundering and illegal money transfers. Users of virtual currencies don't have transaction limits, is secure, can be used for money laundering. Illicit actors use virtual currencies in order to launder money, enable drug trafficking and move child abuse forward.
For businesses, complying with Federal laws is good for the business integrity.
Bringing virtual currencies into regulation will be positive for the US financial system.
3:20 EST: Mythili Raman
Virtual currencies are viewed through the lens of crimnal activity. Criminals will always look for new ways to hide their crimes. The criminal division's main aim is to reduce the ability of criminals to use virtual currencies for illegal activity.
Virtual currencies (as long as the comply with laws) are not illegal. They can be convenient for consumers because they are quick. These same currencies can also be used by criminals for drugs, weapon sales, and child pornography.
In 2007 - EGOLD moved 6 million dollars per day which may have been used for sale of drugs and child pornograpgy
When virtual currencies fail to live up to their Financial Laws, the Justice division will come after them.
Silk road- the largest online marketplace for illegal substances accepts BITCOINs exclusively for payment. When silk road was shut down, the US sized upwards of 70 million dollars from the silk road website.
The US justice department is encouraged by virtual currencies reaching out to comply with FINCEN's laws. (Financial Crimes. Enforcement Network)
3:27 EST- Edward Lowry Digital currencies have continually grown over the past 17 years. Since Criminals and other illegal organizations use virtual currencies such as E-gold and Liberty reserve for illegal operations
As FINCEN emphasized, digital currency exchanges MUST comply with money laundering laws.
The secret service has successfully found and arrested leaders of illegal organizations whom use digital currencies to fund their activities.
Digital currencies are tools used by a wide variety of criminals. The secret service and ICE (immigration and customs enforcement) cooperate with FINCEN in order to find criminals who use virtual currencies for money laundering.
3:34 EST Sen. Tom Caper
Asks about the early days of virtual currencies as well as what the future holds for future currencies.
3:35 EST- Jennifer Shasky Calvery
When there is a new "player" in the currency industries, most people think about the gaps that will exist in the market and how criminals will use it for illegal activity. Moving forward with change is very important though, so regulation is necessary.
3:36 EST- Mythili Ramen
Virtual currencies are not illegal as long as they comply with money laundering laws. The Criminal division needs to be vigilant towards virtual currencies in order to make sure they actively attempt to comply with laws.
3:38 EST -Edward Lowry
The secret service's hallmark is to adopt their defenses to an ever changing threat.
3:39 EST- Sen. Tom Carper
"what roll does the legislative body need in order to combat the dark side of this technology?"
3:41 EST - Edward Lowry
Device fraud- today anyone in the world can reach anyone else in the world. This has changed how ICE and the secret service must combat illegal activity. making his case for more money to his department
3:42 EST- Sen. Tom Carper
- Can Law enforcement keep up with the changing technology?"
3:44 EST- Mythili Ramen
Liberty reserve was taken down in a coordinated arrest done by the US branches joined with other governments. The ability of the criminal division is evolving just as much as criminal activity is evolving.
3:47 EST- jennifer Shasky calvery
Congress passing the Bank secrecy act. in 2011, the justice dept needed flexibility in order to combat digital currencies. With the USA patriot act sec 311, gives FINCEN the authority to name a foreign entity as using money laundering, and thus cut off from the US market.
3:49 EST- Sen. Tom Carper
- "Give examples of how virtual currencies have worked out for the good"
3:50 EST- jennifer Shasky calvery
Online banking and ACH (picture deposit) makes money exchange much easier for the consumer. But with each of these, we had to think about how criminals could exploit it. "CASH IS STILL THE BEST MEANS FOR LAUNDERING MONEY"
- jennifer Shasky calvery
3:52 EST- Sen. Tom Carper
" Do you see gaps in our legislation regarding virtual currencies?"
3:53 EST- Edward Lowry The secret service recognizes that the high level cyber criminals HAVE NOT moved towards P2P currencies such as bitcoin.
Many high-level criminals use centralized online currencies based in places with less regulatory laws.
3:54 EST- Sen. Tom Carper
"Which agencies need to be at the forefront of recognizing virtual currencies"
3:55 EST- Mythili Ramen
The FBI, DEA, OFAC, IRS are necessary participators but are already participators. The National crime agency in the UK has also participated. The Criminal division invites any other entities for help in identifying emerging threats and what governments can do about them
Currently, the criminal statutes used thus far have been effective. The substantive criminal statute, murder statute, and money laundering statutes have already been used to prosecute criminals that use virtual currencies.
Many updates to laws can still be made.
3:59 EST- Sen. Tom Carper
The JAO reports with the help of the IRS on "tax gap." 100's of millions of dollars in taxes that are owed to the treasury. The number is going down over the past 10 years
In may of this year, "virtual currencies could prevent a real vulnerability in the current system."
Question, "do you know the current guidance of that status?"
4:02 EST- Jennifer Shasky Calvery
FINCEN, once it collects financial data, disseminates the information to law enforcement. This is not only for taxes but also for evidence against criminals.
The JAO and FINCEN are working diligently to modify tax laws to incorporate virtual currencies.
The focus of FINCEN is to combat illegal use of virtual currencies while still within U.S laws. Conveniently, many of the laws are very flexible.
4:06 EST- Sen. Tom Carper
After the SILK ROAD shut down, many have popped up in its place. "How do we combat these websites?"
4:07 EST- Edward Lowry
We believe there are 3 infrastructures in place. The SILK ROAD forums, the digital currencies (those which fall outside of the guidance of FINCEN), and "bulletproof hosting" -an organization that provides web hosting to anyone with servers in countries with little regulation.
4:09 EST- Mythili Ramen
We have been successful in combating criminals who use anonymity to continue illegal activity.
4:10 EST- Sen. Tom Carper
Bitcoin and virtual currencies may move overseas to countries with less regulatory agencies. What can we do to combat this? How do we make business stay in the US?
4:12 EST-jennifer Shasky Calvery
Bitcoin is going to be a big player in the future of the exchange of goods and services. The financial action task force does a good job at making the countries around the world comply with regulatory laws.
4:15 EST - Mythili Ramen
This hearing is important for the law agencies because talking about these problems is not easy. Virtual currencies in of themselves are not illegal. Innovation is important. Just as criminals have done for ages, this is just another
means for illegal activity. We need to stay vigilant in keeping pace with evolving virtual currencies.
4:17 EST- Edward Lowry
The secret service will continue to work strategically to remove the gravest structures to the [US] infrastructure. We are going to have to adopt and jump over hurdles but we will work with foreign partners to make this happen. We will continue to work as a part of DHS to eliminate these threats. We believe that aggressive acts by law enforcement will benefit the world as a whole
4:18 EST-Jennifer Shasky Calvery
I heard a CEO of a fairly large bank say, "having the privilege to be a part of the financial industry comes with great responsibility. While innovation is a wonderful thing, it does come with obligations to become part of the US financial system. Regulation in place have help in minimizing the risk and the burden. We ask that businesses do this, put in place AML protections, register with FINCEN, maintain records (including suspicious reports)
We believe that these requests are reasonable because these currencies have already been used for illicit activity.
4:21 EST- Sen. Tom Carper
"This has been a thought provoking and encouraging discussion"
"It's not true We have to choose between a stronger economy and a clean environment"
"Is it possible to reap the benefits of this virtual currencies while still being able to clean up criminal activity?" -RECESS- and change of panel
4:28 EST Introduction by Sen. Tom Carper Ernie Allen
- Centre for missing & Exploited children Patrick Murck
-General council of BITCOIN foundation Jerry Brito
-Senior researcher of Technology at George Mason university. Jeremy Allaire
- Circle Internet Financial CEO
4:30 EST- Ernie Allen
Our goal is to bring people together to protect the digital economy while combating its misuse. We are excited for digital currencies to give "banking" to adults all over the world. Our concern today is the use of digital currencies in child pornography. Most countries have not added regulation to digital currencies.
Over the past year, I have consulted financial experts of this issue. Child pornography is being created and disseminated by using anatomizing technologies and virtual currencies.
Freedom hosting was shut down by law enforcement by penetrating
a loophole in freedom hosting's servers which gave users identities away.
Most of the arrests of those using anonymous networks are of those who are misusing the network. Because of this, we believe that we are not catching the high-level criminals who are using these networks.
We can press for global cooperation to solve these problems. Digital currencies move from nation to nation.
We need to address the core problem which is internet anonymity. An environment in which child exploiters can thrive and not be caught should not be allowed.
Anonymity allows illegal activity, but also acts to give a voice to those against oppressive regimes.
4:39 EST- Patrick Murck
There is no single bitcoin company that manages the value of bitcoin or the trade of bitcoins.
Bitcoin is like email for money. It is secure any completely transparent. Bitcoin can operate without 3rd parties.
Financial exclusion is a problem for the US. There is a rising tide of un-banked people within our borders. Bitcoin can help move people from a trapped economy to a globally connected economy.
Just like any currency, bitcoin can be used for illegal activity. It is no easier to commit crime with bitcoin then it is with any other currency.
Keeping the bitcoin network safe is all of out opportunity. When the SILK ROAD was shut down, the bitcoin community was excited.
Bitcoin is not some magical cloaking device that allows criminals free reign. The use of bitcoins is not un-regulated. The exchanges have a deep understanding of how to effectively allow users to trade bitcoin with fiat currencies.
Bitcoin exchanges- "If you give us clear rules, we will work to abide by them"
We would like to thank FINCEN to opening up the dialog about bitcoin. The bitcoin foundation looks forward to continuing in this dialog with the government and the public.
4:47 EST- Jeremy Allaire
As bitcoin moves into mainstream acceptance, it is important that governments fully understand how to include bitcoin into existing laws.
Bitcoin allows innovation in currency, exchange, and payment that many other currencies cannot offer. Much of our current infrastructure for finances has existed before
the internet was invented.
It is a risk if the government doesn't support businesses that want to use bitcoins. Such businesses may be encouraged to move offshore.
The U.S. falls behind in this critical economic innovation. A bitcoin exchange in CHINA has become the single largest currency exchange in the world .
We need to be open and evolving.
4:53 EST Jerry Brito
From facebook credit to world of warcraft gold, Virtual currencies are nothing new.
Prior to Bitcoins invention in 2009, all virtual currencies needed to be exchanged through an intermediary.
Emerging technologies allow great benefits but great risks. 3-d printers revolutionize personal creation, but also creation of guns.
While Bitcoin transactions don't need intermediaries, many exchanges can still convert government currency to bitcoins.
Criminals are more likely to use centralized currencies because they can lie about how much money has been moved. Currencies such the bitcoin infrastructure show every transaction that happens.
The U.S. could loose it's headstart on an emerging economy if it chooses to create strong regulatory laws.
4:59 EST- Sen. Tom Carper
"Where is the general agreement on the panel, and if not, how can we make agreement?"
5:00 EST- Ernie Allen
There is clear agreement that we can't just ignore the misuse, and that the misuse jeopardizes the currency in the long run.
5:02 EST Patrick Murck
There is a real need to create on ramps into the traditional economic system. The biggest obstacle to that happening is the ability of businesses to get bank accounts in the current system, even a checking account.
If you have the word "bitcoin" anywhere around you, your file will be cast aside.
5:04 EST- Jeremy Allaire
Anonymity needs to be addressed in some way POST IS TOO LONG, LINK TO PART II http://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/1qxgc9/for_those_not_in_us_cspan3_hearing_bitcoin/
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