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NFTs ‘Highly Susceptible’ to Fraud, US Officials Warn

Lax cybersecurity protocols, copyright and trademark issues, and “hype and fluctuating pricing” combine to make non-fungible tokens, also known as NFTs, “highly susceptible” to fraud and theft, U.S. officials warned Wednesday.

In a 29-page national risk assessment, officials with the Treasury Department’s Office of Terrorist Financing and Financial Crimes further found that some platforms that offer NFTs, unique cryptographic tokens that certify ownership of digital or real-world artworks or other goods, do not sufficiently guard themselves against illicit finance in general.

“Criminals use NFTs to launder proceeds from predicate crimes often in combination with other techniques or transactions meant to obfuscate the illicit source of funds,” officials found in the first-of-its-kind assessment. “Some threat actors, like drug traffickers, are increasingly using virtual assets, which could potentially evolve into increasing use of NFTs.”

Platforms that sell NFTs allow buyers to make purchases with stablecoins or other cryptocurrencies, or issue them a dedicated, “platform-specific” digital token for that purpose. Some also accept mainstream currency, debit cards or credit cards as payment.

Terrorist financiers and proliferation financiers to date have only rarely used NFTs, according to the assessment. may update this coverage as more information becomes available.
Topics : Anti-money laundering , Fraud , Info. Security/Cybercrime
Source: U.S.: Department of Treasury
Document Date: May 29, 2024