New tactical tools needed to check sale of drugs through dark net, social media, crypto
The Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) has made a case for developing ‘new tactical tools’ to check the sale of drugs through the dark net, cryptocurrency and social media platforms.
It further suggested that legislation and law enforcement agencies, including DRI, need to continuously evolve and keep themselves updated to ensure timely and effective action against smuggling.
“The use of dark net, cryptocurrency and social media platforms to solicit customers and sell drugs, have also been newer developments that have necessitated the evolution of new tactical tools for drug law enforcement,” said the DRI’s ‘Smuggling in India report 2021-22’ released by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday.
India has been pressing for global regulation of crypto assets to prevent their misuse for terror funding and money laundering.
A concerted action would help establish a money trail and ensure that such assets are not used for funding drug trafficking, terrorism or gaming the system.
The DRI report further said that the anonymity offered by the internet and social media and the emergence of the dark-net and cryptocurrency has also led to an increase in wildlife trafficking.
Speaking on the 65th foundation day, DRI Director General M K Singh said during 2021-22 the enforcement agency has made a record seizure of contraband, including drugs, valued at ₹20,000 crore.
The DRI seized 3,400 kg of heroin, 300 kg of cocaine and more than 20,000 kg of cannabis.
The DRI report said that the need of the time is better risk models and data analytics for identifying risky consignments/ containers.
“Another enforcement challenge is to evolve better examination techniques to detect and identify concealed drugs – recent experiences have shown that traditional examination techniques are inadequate for detecting concealed narcotics, especially which are novel and ingenious – this area requires quickly adopting to new concealment methodologies, capacity building and learnings from experiences,” it added.