Europol has said in a new report that it believes bitcoin could become the go-to currency for digital criminals in the region.
The European Union’s top law enforcement agency released its Internet Organised Crime Threat Assessment for 2015 on 30th September, outlining its view of the top cybercrime threats facing the European Union.
The report focuses on the topic of bitcoin and digital currencies in a number of contexts, including the state of criminal financing and specific elements of illicit activity involving the technology.
Europol said that, according to its data, bitcoin accounts for as much as 40% of criminal-to-criminal payments online, with PayPal accounting for 25% of those reported. The figures build on previous statements from the agency regarding cryptocurrencies as a key factor in the development of the so-called “crime-as-a-service” ecosystem.
The agency noted in its new report:
“Although there is no single common currency used by cybercriminals across the EU, it is apparent that bitcoin may gradually be taking on that role. Bitcoin features as a common payment mechanism across almost all payment scenarios, a trend which can only be expected to increase.”
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The report includes a section on the progression of law