IRS-CI investigators share crypto expertise with Taiwanese law enforcement officials

 

Date: April 26, 2022

Contact: newsroom@ci.irs.gov

Cryptocurrency. The blockchain. Digital wallets. These are terms that are increasingly part of criminal investigations. As leading investigators in the cyber arena, IRS Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI) special agents recently shared their cybercrime expertise with representatives from Taiwan's Criminal Investigation Bureau.

On Friday, April 22, around 35 law enforcement officials from Taiwan's Criminal Investigation Bureau participated in a virtual webinar with IRS-CI. During the training, IRS-CI walked participants through investigative cyber tools, investigative techniques, and current trends involving cybercrimes to aid the Criminal Investigation Bureau with the development of its cybercrime strategy.

"Cybercrime isn't bound by a country's borders. That's why it's essential for IRS-CI to help train our foreign counterparts on how to combat criminal cyber activity. Trainings like this benefit our foreign counterparts, and they help the U.S. squash crimes on a global level," said Guy Ficco, executive director for IRS-CI Global Operations Policy and Support.

Each year, there are between 60 to 70 internet fraud cases in Taiwan tied to the U.S. The monetary losses from this criminal activity equates to more than $10 million. Additionally, IRS-CI currently has several open tax and money laundering investigations linked to Taiwan.

"This training marks the beginning of a what I hope will be a long and fruitful relationship with our Taiwanese counterparts," said Ficco. "The two countries have a shared goal of wanting to stop cyber criminals in their tracks."

IRS-CI is the criminal investigative arm of the IRS, responsible for conducting financial crime investigations, including tax fraud, narcotics trafficking, money-laundering, public corruption, healthcare fraud, identity theft and more. IRS-CI special agents are the only federal law enforcement agents with investigative jurisdiction over violations of the Internal Revenue Code, boasting a nearly 90 percent federal conviction rate. The agency has 20 field offices located across the U.S. and 12 attaché posts abroad.