According to Chainalysis, 2019 will be the year of distributed crime. Criminal activity is moving to distributed platforms, and this is a big challenge for law enforcement agencies. In particular, analysts believe that criminal organizations will begin to leave the darknet, preferring encrypted applications (Telegram, Signal, WhatsApp). Some of these platforms already have channels for people involved in drug trafficking and child pornography.
In addition, cryptocurrencies are increasingly becoming part of traditional crime, and this trend will also continue in 2019.
Many criminal groups are already using bitcoin in their business, and are also increasingly willing to resort to the services of cryptocurrency experts who give them recommendations on integrating cryptocurrencies into fraudulent schemes, money laundering and illegal gambling. In addition, there are cases when cartels and other criminal groups take control of exchanges and miners, using them as a source of “clean” money.
Finally, another threat related to cryptocurrencies is the use of them by states and individuals to circumvent international sanctions. This also poses a big challenge for law enforcement agencies, which, in addition, also have to deal with the growing number of applications that pose a threat to cybersecurity in general.