A recent report states that the latest ISIS war annihilation is caused by the big investment in Bitcoin which is recently experiencing the worst period. Since cryptocurrency is decentralized in nature, it has often seen as the potential way of funding illegal activities.
As per “thesun” report, ex-CIA analyst, Yaya J. Fanusie claims that the chief of terror ISIS group has invested millions in crashing crypto market which will be an annoyance for the terror finance community. However, in the year 2017 when Bitcoin was soaring to the all-time high, most Jihadist groups found working on the crypto funding mechanism a potential opportunity.
Yaya J. Fanusie, the director analyst of Defense analysis Director of Democracies’ Center on Sanctions and Illicit Finance told theSun;
“We don’t have much insight into all jihadist funding activity, but crowdfunding through cryptocurrencies will be less attractive when the price undergoes a sustained nosedive.”
“This is not only for those raising funds but also for potential donors who would see the diminishing value of their donations if they use digital currency.”He continued
With the fact that cryptocurrencies do not run via any established system but on a cryptographic method, terrorists are attracted to the possible opportunities in investing huge funds in crypto. Moreover, Mr. Fanusie explains how some of the drugs and other criminal gangs in regions like Europe, Asia, and the US are leveraging crypto market as a way of money laundering process. He states;
“As the crypto space evolves, there are newer innovations which are likely to be used for moving illicit funds such as decentralized exchanges and more anonymous ‘privacy coins’,”
By having seven years of experience as CIA analyst in economic and counter terrorism field, he says these groups are widely using DEX (Decentralized exchanges) to trade cryptocurrencies anonymously”.
He moreover, provided an instance of cryptocurrency named, “privacy coin which masks “transaction and identities of buyers and sellers”.
FoxNews highlighted that ShapeShift exchange seems to be a good attraction for the terrorist group because, ,reportedly, the exchange had allowed its customers to trade cryptocurrency even without setting up the accounts”. Furthermore, Wall Street wrote within two years, shapeshift has processed $9 million from criminal activities which Erik Voorhees, Shapeshift CEO claims to be incorrect. Voorhees said that;
“A strong record of complying with law-enforcement requests, providing valuable assistance in over 30 investigations in 13 different countries all over the world”.
For criminals, cryptocurrency is not a store of value but a form of money that moves quickly into cash.
Conclusively ex-CIA analyst, Fanusie said;
“Cryptocurrencies can be moved quickly and easily across borders. For cybercriminals, this will remain an attractive feature even at low prices.”