Blockchain Forensics: A Modern Approach to Investigating Cybercrime in the Age of Decentralisation
Blockchain forensics (the use of scientific methods to manipulate data to create useful and informative descriptions of the manipulated data) takes data from the blockchain to interpret the flow of digital assets. Investigators use sophisticated data manipulation and visualization tools to identify the travel history of stolen assets. With these capabilities, chain hopping, round-tripping, and all attempts to blur transfer trails by cyber criminals become smoke screens with no effect. This paper establishes a framework for investigating financial crimes on the blockchain, starting with a brief explanation of blockchain forensics, types of financial crimes committed by criminals using the blockchain, and how they can be mitigated using OSINT’s (OSINT, 2022) investigation process of data collection, data preservation, data processing, and data presentation. This paper also presents a community-based approach to financial crime investigations on the blockchain that involves the public and victims themselves contributing valuable intelligence that can be used to trace and track criminals by authorities and security agencies in the global fight against cybercrime.
Copyright (c) 2023 Saminu Salisu, Velitchko Filipov
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