An Intro to Cryptocurrency & Its Nefarious Uses

An Introduction to Cryptocurrency and Its Nefarious Uses is an MCOLES approved and entirely online course taught by Seth Sattler, CAMS. Students will gain a strong understanding of cryptocurrency transactions and how to spot potential fraud and scams involving cryptocurrencies.

For the five-week duration of this course, students will meet on a weekly basis for one-hour sessions to discuss various aspects of the world of cryptocurrency. Each session will take place on Monday evenings at 6pm EST and consist of 30 to 45 minutes of lecture and 15 to 30 minutes of discussion.

 

Registration Closed!

 

Classes start:  TBD
Cost: $125 per student

Class is limited to 30 students.
MCOLES approved!

 

Questions? Please contact Dr. Tom Holt (holtt@msu.edu).

  • Meet Your Instructor!
    Photo of Seth SattlerSeth Sattler is a Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialist and currently holds the position of Director of Compliance at DigitalMint. He is responsible for designing and implementing DigitalMint’s compliance program, viewed as the standard within the Bitcoin point-of-sale industry. Seth also assists in developing risk mitigation procedures related to ransomware sanctions exposure and fraud victimization. Prior to joining DigitalMint, he worked as an AML Investigator at Huntington National Bank’s AML Model Optimization and Enhancement Team. Outside of DigitalMint, Seth spends time assisting with typology development related to Anti-Human Trafficking and training law enforcement officials, financial intelligence units, and regulators on the risks associated with cryptocurrency.
  • Course Schedule & Outline

    Session 1: Intro to Cryptocurrency

    This session will be an intro to cryptocurrency, misconceptions about it, legitimate use cases, and industry tools that can be used to better understand cryptocurrency transactions. It would explain the high level fundamentals of cryptocurrency and the numerous use cases it currently has. This session would explain what makes it useful for criminal activity and also why there are negative aspects to using it for criminal activity. This session will also include visual aids to better explain industry tools (Blockchain Forensics Tools, Bitcoin Abuse Sites, etc.)

    Session 2: Cryptocurrency and Victimization

    This session will be an indepth look at how cryptocurrency is the new financial medium being used to victimize individuals. It will explore numerous typologies including romance scams, job scams, money mule scams, government impersonation scams, and investment scams. The session will also dive into how events such as the pandemic, stimulus checks, and BTC price increase adjusts the red flags and impacts the fraud aspects of the cryptocurrency world. This session would also include a question and answer session. It would be an updated and more in-depth version of the presentation I provided at the Interdisciplinary Cybercrime Conference 2 years ago.

    Session 3: Cryptocurrency and Criminal Uses by Customers

    Session 3 will look into the illicit use cases for cryptocurrency where the customer is the facilitator or knowing participant. This will include the purchase of stolen credentials online, the purchase of illicit goods, ransomware payments, and illicit funds layering. This session would identify transaction patterns, qualitative flags law enforcement and financial institution employees can look for, and, for ransomware, the potential reasons customers may pay even though it is knowingly remitting funds to a criminal. Additionally, this session will include the issues financial institutions may come across when trying to differentiate between legitimate and nefarious transactions.

    Session 4: Cryptocurrency and Human Trafficking and Terrorist Financing

    As this is an emerging topic, I would like to spend 1 hour solely focused on cryptocurrencies use in high profile crimes such as terrorist financing, state actor ransomware, and human trafficking. Specifically for the human trafficking, I think it would be beneifical to provide law enforcement and financial institution employees with the information they will need to detect human trafficking and prevent victimization through online presence and cryptocurrency transactions. For ransomware and terrorist financing, I believe it is important that attendees understand that transactions related to these high profile crimes aren’t as obvious as they may seem.

    Session 5: Additional Information

    This session will cover any additional questions attendees may have.