Odisha Vigilance organises workshop on crypto currency & digital assets

Bhubaneswar: A workshop on the investigation of corruption cases involving cryptocurrency or digital assets was inaugurated in hybrid (physical/online) mode at State Vigilance Academy, Bhubaneswar.

The workshop was inaugurated by Subroto Bagchi, Chairman, Odisha Skill Development Authority (OSDA) as Chief Guest and Y.K. Jethwa, IPS, Director Vigilance, Odisha as Guest of Honor.

The Director Vigilance, Odisha in his inaugural address highlighted that technological advancements were enabling corrupt practices through anonymity, digital high speed transactions, secretive communications through dark web and such platforms, generation of crypto and digital assets.

Hence, it was necessary for people in the enforcement field, be it Vigilance, Police or other wings of the State, to upgrade knowledge and competence to deal with the challenge. He added that Odisha Vigilance has set up a Cell to exclusively focus on investigation of digital assets, and in close association with crypto experts, have already unearthed and seized crypto assets during DA searches.

Odisha Vigilance was committed to take strong action against digital assets generated through ill gotten means by public servants, and such workshops would help enhance the knowledge and competence of investigators, Jethwa stated.

The Chief Guest, Bagchi appreciated Odisha Vigilance for its fearless and favourless conduct against corrupt practice in the State. He added that this has significantly contributed to the clean image of Odisha State in the country.

He narrated the genesis of crypto currency starting from the year 1990 from when the internet became commercialized. He narrated that developments such as DarkWeb, Blockchain, Crypto currency, FTX, Hydra, Bitzlato etc have mounted the challenge for enforcement personnel, as the application of such advancements are increasingly exploited in criminal activities. By using such tech tools, the criminals may be a step forward individually, but collectively, the state can defeat the challenge.

He added that, enforcement officials need to shift their mindset from cause-effect thinking to systems thinking, to overcome the challenge of the tech and digital world. Systems thinking tells you to look holistically and do things differently.

Further, he stressed on knowledge management. He urged for knowledge harvesting and pooling of collective knowledge by enforcement wings in close collaboration with each other. He congratulated Odisha Vigilance in organizing a workshop on this vital area of Crypto and Digital currencies, and hoped that this would help strengthen the collective knowledge of the state and take the discussion forward.

The workshop will include presentations by Department and Guest speakers on vital areas of Crypto Currency, Non Fungible Tokens (NFT), Digital Assets, Ascertainment of Transfer, Conversion, Disposition or movement of crypto currency/digital assets, tools and techniques required to detect and investigate the use of virtual currencies, legal procedures and requirements for interception of content data in cases involving virtual currencies and investigations of assets created by Benami transactions.

Officers of Vigilance, EOW, CID CB and District Police are participating tin the workshop being conducted in in-person and VC mode

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