CIA director says agency currently has 'a number of different projects' focused on crypto

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William Burns said that gathering cognition connected crypto was “an important priority” for the CIA, and helium planned to give “resources and attention” to it.

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CIA manager  says bureau  presently  has 'a fig   of antithetic  projects' focused connected  crypto

Current manager of the Central Intelligence Agency William Burns said his predecessor astatine the authorities bureau initiated projects focused connected gathering quality connected cryptocurrency.

Fielding a question connected crypto astatine the Wall Street Journal CEO Council Summit connected Monday, Burns said the CIA was looking to adhd expertise successful cryptocurrencies and blockchain to its squad of quality analysts successful summation to communicating with manufacture experts. He said the challenges from the crypto abstraction “could person tremendous impact” connected the United States fixed what helium has already seen successful ransomware attacks.

“My predecessor had started this,” said Burns, apt referring to the actions of erstwhile acting CIA manager David Cohen. “[They] had acceptable successful question a fig of antithetic projects focused connected cryptocurrency and trying to look astatine second- and third-order consequences arsenic good and helping with our colleagues successful different parts of the U.S. authorities to supply coagulated quality connected what we're seeing arsenic well."

Screenshot from Wall Street Journal's CEO Council Summit connected Dec. 6

He added that gathering specified cognition connected crypto was “an important priority” for the Agency, and helium planned to give “resources and attention” to it. The CIA manager did not notation specifics connected the absorption the Agency planned to instrumentality successful respect to warring cyberattacks, but hinted it would purpose to “get astatine the fiscal networks” for transgression groups utilizing integer currencies for ransom. 

Burns, who assumed the manager presumption successful March, has seen hackers request millions successful crypto implicit an attack connected Colonial Pipeline system successful May, but besides a task unit from the U.S. authorities respond by recovering the bulk of the mislaid funds. Michael Morrell, a erstwhile acting CIA manager from 2012 to 2013, said “blockchain investigation is simply a highly effectual transgression warring and quality gathering tool,” 1 underutilized by instrumentality enforcement agencies.

Related: CIA Has Had Keys to Global Communication Encryption Since WWII

There is nary fixed word for a CIA director, meaning Burns volition apt service astatine the Agency astatine the pleasance of U.S. President Joe Biden. At the clip of publication, Biden has yet to denote his picks to capable 3 bare seats connected the committee of governors of the Federal Reserve System.

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