Seizure of Terrorist Crypto Wallets
The National Bureau for Counter Terrorist Financing in Israel reported on June 28th that crypto wallets with millions of dollars which were intended to finance terror have been seized. Minister of Defense Yoav Gallant praised the joint effort between the Defense and Justice Ministries, Israeli intelligence, and the use of modern technology for the success of the operation, as reported by local media.
At a conference on June 27, Gallant declared that the operation had recently finished and had confiscated crypto that had been sent to terrorist organization Hezbollah and the Iranian Quds Force. This seizure was the largest of cryptocurrency from these two groups thus far. “We have blocked the transmission of terror funds through this channel,” Gallant stated. He further added:
Gallant declared that Hezbollah, Quds, and Syrian elements had been utilizing cryptocurrency to acquire funds from external sources, mainly from money exchangers with whom they had conducted illicit transactions.
Two key security practices for Web3 startups discussed at the Israel Crypto Conference were highlighted.
Chainalysis, a blockchain analytics firm, declared in a blog post that Israeli authorities had confiscated $1.7 million as part of a successful operation. Furthermore, they stated that “Chainalysis tools contributed to this remarkable accomplishment in national security.”
In April, Palestinian Sunni organization Hamas declared that it would no longer take donations in cryptocurrency, reversing its longstanding policy, due to worries about the security of those who donate, following the “intensification of hostile efforts against anyone who attempts to back the resistance using this currency”. This operation was not the first to confront crypto financing.
Several days after Reuters reported it, Israel had reportedly taken control of roughly 190 Binance accounts related to the Islamic State and Hamas since 2021. Binance responded with a blog post asserting that the Reuters story was “omitting important information” in its coverage.
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