The EFCC has Reclaimed $20 Million in Cryptocurrency from Fraudsters- Bawa
NewsReport June 15, 2021
Abdulrasheed Bawa, chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), claims the commission has recovered $20million worth of cryptocurrencies from cybercriminals.
NewsReport gathered that on Sunrise Daily, Channels Television today, Bawa said the commission saw bitcoin as an “avenue where criminals launder proceeds of crime”.
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) issued a directive requiring banks to close accounts of individuals or entities involved in cryptocurrency transactions on their systems.
“As it stands today, bitcoin is not regulated anywhere in the world. “The EFCC is looking at cryptocurrency as a means for people to launder their criminal proceeds,” he stated.
“We are concerned about where people are receiving proceeds of crime. We have seen time and again how cybercriminals use it as a means of obtaining illegal proceeds.
“Previously, it was done through money transfer companies such as Money Gram and Western Union. They’ve changed their name to E.
“They will swindle someone in order to obtain gift cards, which they will then trade on the dark web and use the earnings to purchase cryptocurrency. And then, of course, get it into their e-wallets so they can sell it and get paid.”
[b]“As of today, we have approximately $20 million in bitcoin because we have developed our own cryptocurrency wallet to recover cryptocurrency. We are currently recouping the proceeds of the crime. [/b]
“We support what the CBN has done since it has restricted the simplicity with which these criminals may obtain cryptocurrencies and exchange it for naira.
“I believe we will not be left behind in terms of ensuring that laws and regulations are put in place to checkmate cryptocurrency excesses.”
According to Bawa, 1,436 suspected cybercriminals were apprehended around the country between January and June 3, 2021.
“According to statistics, the EFCC apprehended 1436 alleged cybercriminals across the nation from January to June,” he stated.