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Cryptocurrencies project receives FNR funding

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Published on Tuesday, 19 December 2017

A research project exploring the fight against the criminal misuse of cryptocurrencies has been granted funding by the Luxembourg National Research Fund.

The project will be led by Associate Prof. Silvia Allegrezza for a period of two years.

During this time, the project intends to contribute to the design of a coordinated European Union supervision and enforcement system to combat criminal uses of virtual currencies. Once hailed as an innovative peer-to-peer payment system, cryptocurrencies have increasingly been linked to money-laundering, fraud and trafficking in illicit goods. They pose a particular challenge in that they are designed to conceal the identity of their users, making it difficult to identify perpetrators in criminal investigations.

Since cryptocurrency services operate across national borders through the internet, the research project will focus on enhancing international cooperation and coordination to effectively detect, investigate and sanction crimes perpetrated by means of cryptocurrencies. To this end, the study will take advantage of the strategic position of Luxembourg, both as a dynamic hub for blockchain industry and cryptocurrencies markets.

The Luxembourg team of researchers will be supported by an interdisciplinary penal of eminent experts in the field from Germany, Singapore, the UK and the US.

The FNR funding was awarded through the OPEN 2017 scheme, with €437,000 awarded for the two-year project.