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Our approach to preventing illicit activity in crypto

Tl;dr: No currency of any type - whether it’s fiat, gold, or crypto - should ever be used to support Hamas or any other terrorist organizations. That is why Coinbase focuses on rooting out bad actors seeking to use crypto for illicit purposes. We maintain a robust compliance program, which includes KYC checks, sanctions screening, suspicious activity reporting, and strong law enforcement partnerships, to prevent and detect illicit activity on our platform. Further, blockchain analytics technology allows us to trace, report, and even prevent terrorist financing. This is why it’s critical to prevent crypto from thriving offshore and ensure that the US continues to be a world leader in the fight against financial crime and terrorism.

By Coinbase


, October 17, 2023

, 3min read time

Coinbase Blog

Coinbase uses the power of the blockchain, in partnership with law enforcement, to track and prevent the funding of terrorist organizations 

  • Coinbase has a proven track record of quickly identifying, investigating and rooting out bad actors who seek to abuse crypto for illicit purposes. 

  • Our Sanctions Screening tool allows us to swiftly detect and stop sanctions related transactions, particularly those linked to terrorist groups, before they happen and report them to authorities. 

  • We have 400 compliance, legal, and investigative staff throughout the company who work alongside US government national security and law enforcement agencies, including senior personnel who served in those agencies. 

  • Our team conducts sanctions screening and KYC checks at onboarding and throughout the customer lifecycle, monitors and reports suspicious transactions to regulators, and closely monitors and blocks IP addresses connected to prohibited jurisdictions. 

Fiat currencies are what terrorist organizations rely on, blockchain is a tool to fight the funding of terrorism

  • The overwhelming majority of terrorist funding still relies on traditional financial systems, like cash.

  • Cryptocurrency’s immutable ledger system makes these types of transactions easier to trace, serving as a deterrent for bad actors.

  • Cash payments are harder to track between institutions and geographies.

Pushing crypto offshore would increase the risk of illicit activity

  • The reports of Hamas funding linked to digital assets are connected to offshore entities not subject to US laws, including anti-money laundering and sanctions regulations, making it easier for them to engage in such conduct. 

This is why we need clear regulation in the U.S.

  • By creating clear rules of the road, we keep crypto in the United States and other regulated jurisdictions, ensuring compliance with sanctions and anti-money laundering rules.

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