A member of the French version of Homeland Security, the Direction Générale de la Sécurité Intérieure (DGSI), has been caught selling highly classified information over the dark web for Bitcoin (BTC).
The unnamed agent has allegedly been working with a criminal organization as well as economic specialists to leak state secrets and produce fraudulent administrative documents. He was taken into custody in the Paris suburb of Nanterre last week.
Local news outlet Le Monde reported that a French government agency responsible for battling irregular immigration has now managed to infiltrate and disband the criminal organization. So far no links to terrorism have been established.
The illicit activity was first spotted by the Central Directorate of the Judicial Police who then passed the case on to the DGSI for investigation. Using the agents own personal online identifier they were able to track his illegal activities and arrest him.
Details of what exactly was leaked and how much the agent was paid in Bitcoin are unclear at present but if he is found guilty he could spend seven years in jail and be fined up to €100,000.
Why he chose to use an easily traceable and highly transparent cryptocurrency like Bitcoin over more privacy-focused coins like ZCash or Monero show just how little even secret agents know about keeping secret. While cryptocurrency continues to be linked to criminal activities on occasion, the FBI has recently revealed that cash is still the first choice for the majority of illegal transactions.