A security specialist told a group of U.S. senators on Tuesday that digital currencies are “tailor-made” for foreign powers hoping to impact American elections.
Scott Dueweke, director of threat analysis company DarkTower, came as one of several witnesses showing up prior to the Senate Subcommittee on Crime and Terrorism to talk about the possible use of cryptocurrencies by foreign agents so as to impact American elections. He asserted that congress must concentrate on identity remedies to avoid excessive foreign impact on forthcoming elections.
“There is a worldwide shell game being played now,” by individuals wishing to avoid financial disclosure guidelines, he said. Consequently, they are acquiring political ads and giving to a number of parties in efforts to impact elections.
“They swap one type of money for a different one… fiat currency in and fiat currency out, but in the middle, you’re going to have these multiple layers of cryptocurrency that are going to be extremely hard to monitor.”
One other witness, Financial Integrity Network vice president David Murray, said that cryptocurrencies could be utilized by foreign bodies to prevent detection when giving to political parties or politicians.
He compared the use of cryptocurrencies with contributions made by means of financial organizations.
“When contributors utilize financial intermediaries like banks to carry out donations, the location of the financial intermediary is a data point that campaigns could utilize to recognize foreign donors,” he revealed.
Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, the lead Democrat on the subcommittee who directed the questions in the course of the hearing, said that “cryptocurrency could be utilized for money laundering in elections,” and consequently creates a “host of difficulties for Congress and government bodies.”
He thought about the concept of utilizing laws to impose more strict identity requirements on people making donations to a political campaign – a push that Dueweke asserted is important.
“Merging better forensics to comprehend the origin of funds, linked to more robust identity attribution for those placing political advertisements is crucial,” Dueweke said. “We need to be in a position to recognize the people that are fanning these flames.”