A security consultant told a Senate committee on Tuesday that Cryptocurrencies are “tailor-made” for foreign powers looking to influence American elections
Scott Dueweke, the director of threat analysis at DarkTower appeared before the Senate Subcommittee on Crime and Terrorism and discussed the possible use of cryptocurrencies by foreign agents to influence the American election process. Dueweke argues that US legislators need to focus on identity solutions to help prevent unnecessary foreign influence on future elections.
He believes that people hoping to bypass financial disclosure regulations are purchasing political advertisements and donating to parties in an effort to influence elections. Dueweke adds that:
“They exchange one form of money for another … fiat currency in and fiat currency out, but in between, you’re going to have these multiple layers of cryptocurrency that are going to be impossible to track.”
Meanwhile, another witness, David Murray of Financial Integrity Network notes cryptocurrencies can easily be used by foreign powers to avoid being detected when donating to domestic political parties or politicians.
Murray contrasts crypto donations with those made via financial institutions, saying that the location of the financial institution that executed the donation is a way for a campaign to identify foreign donors.
Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (Dem-R.I.), the ranking Democrat on the subcommittee says that “cryptocurrency can be used for money laundering in elections,” and therefore pose a “host of challenges for Congress and regulators.”
Senator Whitehouse considered the proposal to use legislation to help enforce more thorough identity requirements on individuals who donate to political campaigns, an idea that Dueweke argued is important.
Dueweke told the US Senate that “Combining better forensics to understand the source of funds, tied to stronger identity attribution for those placing political ads is critical. We have to be able to identify the people that are fanning these flames.”