The FBI has established a new unit that will provide virtual currency-related intelligence, operational and technology support to other divisions across the bureau. The bureau said Tuesday the virtual assets unit will help the FBI track illicit funds, counter illegal activity and attribute criminal actors.
The FBI’s cyber and criminal investigative divisions worked together in the past several months to establish VAU in support of the bureau’s plan to address the need for virtual asset-related expertise in intelligence and law enforcement communities.
“The FBI has a long history of using virtual currency to track criminals profiting from ransomware, soliciting murders-for-hire, and raising funds for terrorist organizations. The VAU will integrate experts across the organization to leverage the outstanding work being done every day,” said Brian Turner, executive assistant director of the bureau’s criminal, cyber, response and services branch.
The FBI criminal investigative division’s financial crimes section oversees VAU, which kicked off operations on Feb. 7th.