Since at least 2014, North Korea has shown increasing cybercrime expertise and interest, more recently expanding into VAs. Throughout 2020 and 2021, the US Department of Justice indicted a series of individuals for laundering VAs on behalf of North Korea. Yet, while most North Korean VA activity involves large-scale hacks, such as the $49 million 2019 Upbit hack or the $275 million stolen from KuCoin in 2020, the regime has also shown interest in ransomware attacks and VA mining. Overall, North Korea is highly advanced in the cybercrime realm and seems increasingly interested in applying these skills to cryptocurrency activities. Similarly, although not the core focus of this guidance paper, Iran has reportedly begun to use VA mining to evade sanctions and export oil, with a huge share of global VA mining taking place in the country. With global compliance and regulation lacking in many jurisdictions, VASPs can present an easy target for these actors.
A decade after Moscow launched a strategic initiative to reorientate its economy toward Asian markets, Dr Richard Connolly, Director of the Eastern Advisory Group consultancy, discusses Russia’s policies and the challenges that Moscow has faced in developing new trade and business ties to promote its underdeveloped eastern regions with Dr Neil Melvin, Director RUSI International Security Studies.
Since Afghan President Ashraf Ghani fled Kabul on 15 August, Russia has cautiously accommodated the Taliban’s seizure of power. Diplomats, such as Russian Ambassador to Afghanistan Dmitry Zhirnov and President Vladimir Putin’s envoy to Afghanistan Zamir Kabulov, have praised the Taliban’s contributions to security in Kabul and the struggle against Islamic State-Khorasan Province (ISIS-K). While Russia has no immediate plans to afford diplomatic recognition to the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, Putin recently stated that Moscow will engage with the Taliban as soon as it ‘enters the family of civilized people’.
But how do you manage this in an era of persistent engagement? Andy Young talks to Major General Jez Bennett, Director Futures for Land, about technology, risk, and the role of the new Ranger Regiment as the British Army modernises for an era of global competition.
The typical British Army posting lasts two years. The reason for this is straightforward. There are nine substantive ranks (if 2nd and 1st lieutenants are merged), which, combined with the tiers of professional military education, mean that each officer can have two jobs at each rank below that of general – one command and one staff position – before topping out within the maximum years of service. The army is unusual because whereas civilian organisations recruit specialists to fill specific positions, the army is almost exclusively fed from its base, and at the base there are a narrow range of specialisms available.
As part of our series of videos reflecting on 20 years since the 9/11 attacks, Sir Mark Rowley, a retired senior police officer, shares his perspective working in counterterrorism in the two decades that followed.
As part of our series of videos reflecting on 20 years since the 9/11 attacks, Tom Keatinge, Director of Centre for Financial Crime and Security Studies at RUSI, reflects on the financial ramifications of the event.
Policies, military strategies and capabilities, and partnerships have all been constant themes in the debate on the 20 years of counterterrorism since 9/11. But the harrowing footage from Afghanistan has once again put the human aspect of terrorism in the spotlight.
In June 2020, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) urged countries to increase the use of financial investigations into illegal wildlife trade cases.
A year on, in July 2021, it published a further analysis on mineral, waste and timber trafficking. In advance of the FATF’s upcoming October plenary, Tom Keatinge and Alexandria Reid take a deep dive into the thornier aspects of the FATF’s current approach to environmental crime.