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Let’s be Blunt – Time For A New Critical Infrastructure Sector?

By Luke Bencie and Sami Araboghli

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has identified 16 infrastructure sectors that are critical to the safety, security, and way of life of the United States. Varying from our financial systems and energy grid – to healthcare, transportation, and communication networks, any disruption to these systems would wreak havoc on the American way of life. Thankfully, DHS has crafted resiliency plans to counteract almost any “what-if” scenario that can happen, with the help of federal, state, and local authorities. However, there is one sector that is inevitably becoming a national commodity, something that federal security and financial regulations haven’t been able to accommodate yet. That sector is the multi-billion dollar medical and recreational cannabis industry.

Albeit controversial, sales of marijuana (and cannabis-related products) reached $9.2 billion in 2017. After years of being considered a drug with a high-potential for abuse and no accepted medical use, legalization has so far encompassed 33 states and the District of Columbia. The schedule I drug has become so popular with mainstream users, Forbes predicts that sales will reach $48 billion annually in less than a decade. Consider the following: If you spent $20.00 per second, every day for three years, it would add up roughly to the amount of cannabis sold in the State of California alone in 2018 – over $2.5 billion and mostly transacted in cash. With amounts like this in prospect, why wouldn’t people want to get in on the action?

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