Treasury Department Sanctions a Bitcoin Mixer
The U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) sanctioned the Bitcoin mixer Blender.io for allegedly processing $20.5 million in stolen cryptocurrency.
According to the Treasury Department, Lazarus Group, a hacking group purportedly sponsored by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), moved more than 20 million dollars worth of cryptocurrency through Blender.io. Lazarus Group reportedly stole virtual currency worth 600 million dollars from “a blockchain project linked to the online game Axie Infinity.” The 20 million processed by Blender.io, according to the Treasury Department, was a part of the Axie Infinity heist.
Blender.io is hardly the only cryptocurrecy mixer used for less than legal purposes.
“Today, for the first time ever, Treasury is sanctioning a virtual currency mixer,” said Under Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Brian E. Nelson. “Virtual currency mixers that assist illicit transactions pose a threat to U.S. national security interests. We are taking action against illicit financial activity by the DPRK and will not allow state-sponsored thievery and its money-laundering enablers to go unanswered.”
In late March, Ronin, an Ethereum sidechain built for the popular play-to-earn nonfungible token game Axie Infinity, was hacked for over 173,600 Ether (ETH) and 25.5 million USD Coin (USDC) for a combined value of over $600 million.
The updated list of DPRK sanctions includes Blender.to, Blender.io, Blender’s onion address (blenderiopnzbuvtva6d2ddiedrbf6fbekh5axomzho6wrulowcludad.onion), their Telegram bots, and the company’s email addresses, among other things. Additionally, the Treasury Department identified four Ethereum addresses allegedly associated with Lazarus Group. All four have been added to the list of sanctions.
“The virtual currency mixers that assist criminals are a threat to U.S. national security interests. Treasury will continue to investigate the use of mixers for illicit purposes and consider the range of authorities Treasury has to respond to illicit financing risks in the virtual currency ecosystem. For example, in 2020, Treasury’s Financial Crime Enforcement Network (FinCEN) assessed a $60 million civil money penalty against the owner and operator of a virtual currency mixer for violations of the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) and its implementing regulations. Criminals have increased use of anonymity-enhancing technologies, including mixers, to help hide the movement or origin of funds. Additional information on illicit financing risks associated with mixers and other anonymity-enhancing technologies in the virtual asset ecosystem can be found in the 2022 National Money Laundering Risk Assessment.”
Blender paused operations in April for maintenance. As of May 7, 2022 at 9:14 PM (GMT +1), all three of Blender’s sanctioned addresses are offline (as is one that was not sanctioned).
U.S. Treasury Issues First-Ever Sanctions on a Virtual Currency Mixer, Targets DPRK Cyber Threats archive.is, archive.org, treasury.gov
I don’t mean to cut anyones hustle here but mixers can be traced (LE is still not able to do an even fair job it but it’s all on the same block chain bro dude mahhnn!!..) when you switch that jumps you between blockchains at a minimum… it’s easy too
people still use bitcoin?? fucking losers
hahaha good one ;)
Hahahaha why not Monero instead? LAME
Monero is the way
XMR is the only way.
ayo i aint talkin shit bout DNL but aint yall feel somethin missin in deez comments?
Significantly fewer comments if I have to manually approve them. I think people are less likely to comment if the comments take forever to show up.
Additionally I try to select every real comment manually and then just bulk delete all spam but I know real comments have been deleted in the past.
I just learned about the 255 character limit smh. Might be fixed now.
Maybe people will learn about Monero now
for real xmr is the answer
Please limit your anti-semitic bullshit to the Neo-Nazi forums you ignorant fuck. This is not the proper forum for such views. Thank you and please fuck off you sad sad Trump University dropout.
You realize that Trump is way too much of a progressive liberal for neon nazis right?
Lol, comments are being manually approved again.
How much do you get paid for posting this shit? Are you aware you support governments that try to enslave people? Are you aware there is no ponzi scheme related with how Bitcoin works? Your shithole USA violates human lives, kidnap and torture people of other nations, tries to build cashless future and introduce CBDC tokens with expiration date to control society.
As Viktor Tatarintsev said: Excuse my language, but we don’t give a shit about all their sanctions. if mixing is prevented, one may just convert cryptocurrencies.