U.S. Treasury Warns of High Fraud and Scam Risks in NFT Market

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U.S. Treasury Warns of High Fraud and Scam Risks in NFT Market
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The U.S. Treasury Department has identified NFTs as “highly susceptible to fraud and scams” in its latest risk assessment on illicit finance.

Released on May 29, the report outlines how NFTs can be used by criminals to launder money from illegal activities, highlighting the potential for NFTs to facilitate money laundering due to their unique and high-value nature.

This report marks the Treasury’s first detailed examination of NFTs in the context of financial crime.

Illicit Finance Risk Assessment
of NFTs

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“The report determines that illicit actors can use NFTs to launder proceeds from predicate crimes, often in combination with other methods to obfuscate the illicit source of proceeds of crime,” the Treasury stated.

The Treasury also noted that many NFT platforms do not have adequate controls to prevent money laundering and sanctions evasion and recommends that stricter regulations be applied to NFTs and the platforms that trade them to mitigate these risks.

This assessment contrasts with a U.S. government study from March, which found that no new legislation was needed to address copyright and trademark issues in the NFT space. The Treasury’s current evaluation, however, focuses on financial vulnerabilities.

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