In India, criminals now have a different demand for victims. Victims are now being asked to give bitcoin as ransom.
On Monday, nine scoundrel police officers were apprehended in the western Indian state of Gujarat for hijacking and demanding a ransom of 200 bitcoins from a businessman in February, in addition to Rs32 crore in cash which is equivalent to $49, 12,000.
Presently in Indian, bitcoin is valued at around $Rs4.43 lakh, implying that the police officers took close to Rs9 crore in bitcoin.
According to the businessman, he was moved to an anonymous place and demanded to move the 200 bitcoin into another digital wallet. Authorities in charge of the case are presently investigating if the transfer actually occurred.
As cryptocurrencies gain popularity, the cryptocurrency crime rates have increased significantly. However, these activities are only related to hacking or criminal online transfers.
This increase in crime is happening at a time when the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) is banning cryptocurrencies. Lenders, banks and other financial institutions have been ordered by the central bank to cease all cryptocurrency transactions. The banks’ move comes as fears of cryptocurrency criminal activities increases in the country.
In a press conference last week, RBI deputy governor BP Kanungo stated, “Internationally, while the regulatory response to these tokens are not uniform, it is universally felt that they can seriously undermine the AML (anti-money laundering) and FATF (Financial Action Task Force) framework and adversely impact market integrity and capital control.”
Additionally, the Indian government has also sent a warning to citizens about the risk involved in cryptocurrencies.