The United States Secret Service’s San Francisco Field Office (USSS) and the Bay Area Regional Enforcement Allied Computer Team (REACT) dropped by on Reddit for a two-hour chat with crypto users. The forces held a joint AMA (ask me anything) session at 11 a.m. Pacific time on Monday on the r/Cryptocurrency channel.
The event was run by the SF-USSS account, with REACT team participating in the discussion via REACT-TF handle. To dispel any doubts regarding the account’s legitimacy, the USSS posted a verification image on Imgur.
The US Secret Service is a federal law enforcement agency primarily charged with protecting US political leaders, but it’s also tasked with safeguarding the financial system and fighting financial crime. The USSS has a squad dedicated to investigating cryptocurrency crime based in San Francisco. “We are comprised of Special Agents and Analysts who have embraced the future of money, and we’re eager to share our work with this cryptocurrency community and provide resources and education to help keep your money safe,” reads the introductory note on Reddit.
The AMA’s general idea was to explain how victims of crypto frauds can collaborate with law enforcement and encourage them to do so. REACT-TF declares that the force can be effective in recovering stolen funds.
The hosts also advised on how to keep transactions hidden from the authorities. Disappointingly for crypto enthusiasts, the only viable way of securing secrecy in financial settlements turns out to be cash.
The React Task Force contributed to the pain by stating: “The blockchain provides us with an amazing opportunity to track the flow of money.” The USSS put it a bit more softly, clarifying that although blockchain makes it easy to trace funds, attributing wallets to individuals is more challenging. Still, hardly a mission impossible
Addressing crypto crime, the USSS mentioned so-called pig butchering as one of the most concerning scam methods leading thousands to lose huge sums after being lured into shady investment schemes. The name of the technique refers to the practice of fattening a pig before slaughter. “The average pig butchering victim reporting to our office has losses exceeding $250k,” claims SF-USSS.