The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) opened an application on August 10th searching for a solution to store the digital assets it seizes in cybercrime operations.
The RCMP said the repository was needed in order to seize assets in a “user friendly manner, while also offering significant security to prevent the theft of said assets during their storage.”
According to the announcement, there are 17 requirements for the future repository. Some of the demands include scalability to support new blockchains, processing capabilities for the top 20 cryptocurrencies by market cap, and the ability to store Ethereum, Polygon, and Solana-based NFTs.
The digital asset solution must also ensure the the protection of private keys, daily automated verification, and secure disposal process. The notice mentions an Android-based mobile application.
This won’t be the first time the RCMP has used Web technology to fight crime. Recently, the organization began employing software from Chainalysis, a New York-based blockchain analysis firm, to track cryptocurrency when investing crimes.
In the past, Law and Order has often criticized cryptocurrency for its appeal to criminals and use on the dark web. But Web3 technologies like blockchain can also be used to track financial transactions and suspicious movements of money, eventually helping to identify suspects and stop crime. The RCMP’s call for a digital asset repository shows its well aware of the growing necessity for Web3 literacy.
Web3 Tech Embraced By Law Enforcement & Intelligence Agencies
The move from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police to seek a repository for NFT and crypto seizures shows it’s a long way from its iconic image of a young officers on a horses. But interestingly, the RCMP isn’t the only crime-fighting agency that’s bullish on Web3. At Rarity Sniper, we’ve covered several stories about government agencies using Web3 technologies to maintain law and order.
First, in June 2023, the Bundesnachrichtendienst (BNB), Germany’s federal intelligence agency, dropped the “Dogs of BND,” a 999 set Ethereum-based NFT collection with the goal of recruiting talent in cyber space. Users had to participate in a gamified treasure hunt to locate hidden data before they could mint their NFTs.
Next, on May 15th, the U.S. Secret Service participated in a Reddit Ask-Me-Anything Session (AMA) with the subreddit community r/cryptocurrency. The highly secretive agency told Redditors that it was bullish on blockchain for its immutability and usefulness in fighting financial crime. It even revealed that it has its own NFT collection.
Lastly, on February 15th , 2023, a court hearing in Colombia was conducted in Meta’s Horizon Workrooms. Columbian lawyers wore VR headsets and appeared as avatars in the digital court room. It was the first court-hearing in Latin America to take place in a metaverse.
Despite the rough start, it now appears many agencies around the world understand that Web3 technologies can be efficient tools for fighting crime. With this realization, entities like the RCMP are trying to get up to speed and understand the technologies better. As time passes, we expect more stories like this one to unfold.