Russia hopes legitimizing Bitcoin will thwart crooks

Moiseev pitches this as a bid to fight money laundering. If Russia knows who’s involved in a transaction (as is the case with regular money), it can thwart attempts to disguise crimes by shuttling money abroad. The country has already had success fighting conventional laundering schemes in the past several years, and this would prevent criminals from shifting to digital formats.

This recognition isn’t necessarily going to do much to thwart criminals who use bitcoin to hold devices for ransom (they’re not law-abiding to start with), and it’s certainly not going to affect state-backed hackers that regularly deal in cryptocurrencies. Even so, it’s a big step forward for both everyday Russians hoping to use digital cash as well as people abroad worried that Russia’s policies were letting many criminals go unchecked.

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