October 20, 2023

Stricter Verification Laws in the U.S. Won’t Stop International Terrorists from Using Crypto

Recent reporting about Palestinian terrorist groups accessing crypto assets points to an ongoing challenge: Terrorist organizations continue to exploit weak links across the financial system to raise, hide, and disperse funds. Many gaps exist, both with traditional financial actors and some crypto platforms that don’t effectively enforce the clear legal requirements that should keep members of terrorist networks away from their services.

The realm of terrorist financing is always a cat-and-mouse game.

It’s important to note that crypto companies in the U.S. are regulated—and have been since 2013. Exchanges and other financial intermediaries are money service businesses under Bank Secrecy Act regulations, and they’re already required to register with FinCEN and report any suspicious—potentially criminal—activity. U.S. exchanges do AML/KYC checks and screen all potential customers for sanctions. It makes the U.S. safer. In this case, other countries have something to learn from the U.S.

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