US Torpedoes Another Cryptocurrency Mixer

The United States Treasury Department has decided to take action against Tornado Cash, accusing it of having been used to launder the equivalent of $7 billion in virtual currency since its inception in 2019.

Tornado Cash is a mixer – or mixer – of cryptocurrencies to improve confidentiality and complicate the tracing of transactions (while the blockchain is a public register of transactions), and in this case Ethereum transactions. On the general principle, it is a question of mixing the transfers of several users before sending.

Despite publicly claiming otherwise, Tornado Cash has repeatedly failed to impose effective controls designed to prevent it from routinely laundering funds to malicious cyber actors. “said a spokesman for the US Treasury.

Tornado Cash after Blender.io

According to the US Treasury, for example, Tornado Cash was used to launder more than $455 million following the theft of cryptocurrencies on the Ronin network (secondary blockchain) used for the online game Axie Infinity. The FBI attributed the theft to the North Korean-backed Lazarus (APT38) hacker group.

In the wake of this same case, sanctions had already been taken last May against the blender of cryptocurrencies Blender.io. ” Virtual currency mixers that aid criminals pose a national security threat to the United States.

The sanctions taken imply that all assets of Tornado Cash ” located in the United States, in the possession or under the control of American persons are blocked and must be reported. “They prevent transactions with American nationals.

Disruptions affected tools hosted on GitHub and used by Tornado Cash. A 29-year-old man was also arrested in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.

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