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Metaverse: A Potential Money Laundering Hub?

Experts have issued warnings about the potential for criminal organizations to launder billions in the virtual universe of the Metaverse.

Authorities reportedly thwarted a $1 billion money laundering scheme involving suspects using NFTs in the Metaverse. In an interview with the British newspaper “Sun,” Bion Bhedin, partner at First AML (anti-money laundering), revealed that criminal organizations are utilizing seemingly innocent online games like “World of Warcraft” or “Roblox” to discreetly move money into international accounts.

Bhedin explained that these organizations can convert money from illegal activities or stolen credit cards into the virtual currency of the game, a method also applicable in the Metaverse.

Metaverse: A Potential Money Laundering Hub?

According to Bhedin, by purchasing virtual items from other users, the digital currency withdrawn from the Metaverse can be converted into real currency and sent overseas.

Experts have raised concerns about the risks posed by a digital casino employing thousands of fake profiles and engaging in secret crypto transactions within the Metaverse.

Former US prosecutor John Bandler noted that the upper limit of how much money can be stored and moved in the Metaverse remains unknown. Bandler emphasized the “infinite” potential for money laundering in the Metaverse, citing examples like creating an imaginary house in the virtual world and selling it for real value as a method to transfer money.

Experts warned that, unlike the physical world, there is currently no institution like INTERPOL (International Police Organization) for the Metaverse, making it challenging to track and prevent digital crimes.

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