Cryptocurrency Mixer sometimes used to help online criminals launder their stolen money by concealing its true origin and the US Treasury Department is now ready to stop them when hostile governments are involved . Parts have grant Their first sanctions against a Bitcoin mixer, Blender.io, for allegedly and “indiscriminately” helped North Korea launder over $20.5 million in crypto from $620 million Axie Infinity steal and other crimes.
These measures block all Blender assets located in the US (or controlled by US residents), as well as US-linked transactions and any entities over which those blocked have control majority control. At a basic level, blocks create an audit trail and prevent sanctioned legal entities funds from changing hands.
Sanctions came after officials pinned Axie Infinity steal on Lazarus Group, an outfit commonly associated with the North Korean government’s anti-cybercrime and cyberwarfare efforts. North Korea has been accused many times bank hack and cryptocurrency holders to evade international sanctions and fund its weapons programs.
The Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control also used the opportunity to identify four digital wallets that Lazarus allegedly used to launder the rest of his money. Axie Infinity electronic money. The perpetrators rely only on a wallet “getaway” to commit crimes.
The agency emphasizes that most crypto activities are legal and that it is only aimed at mixers that support crime. However, there is a not-so-subtle warning here: The US is ready to punish crypto service providers if they tolerate state-backed hackers, not just nations. direct those hacks.
All products recommended by Engadget are handpicked by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.