U.S. Treasury Plans to Add Cryptocurrency Addresses to the SDN List

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U.S. Treasury Plans to Add Cryptocurrency Addresses to the SDN List

This week the U.S. Treasury Department issued guidelines on how the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) could add cryptocurrency addresses to the country’s sanction list.

Also read: New Tools Help Crypto Traders Make Smarter Decisions

Cryptocurrency Addresses to be Added to the U.S. Sanctions List

U.S. Treasury Plans to Add Cryptocurrency Addresses to the SDN ListThe U.S. government may soon have the ability to add cryptocurrency addresses to the Specially Designated Nationals (SDN) List. Coincidently the oversight advice happened on the same day President Trump signed an executive order banning the Venezuelan petro (PTR). The petro is mentioned among a variety of digital assets including BTC, ETH, LTC, NEO, XMR, and XRP.

The Treasury calls a cryptocurrency wallet “a software application (or other mechanisms) that provides a means for holding, storing, and transferring digital currency.” The report also describes a virtual currency and an address:    

A [Digital Currency Address] is an alphanumeric identifier that represents a potential destination for a digital currency transfer.

U.S. Treasury Plans to Add Cryptocurrency Addresses to the SDN List

OFAC May “Alert the Public” About Suspect Digital Currency Identifiers

Additionally, the agency issued guidance to those who have identified SDN owned wallets and addresses and ask them to report the news to OFAC immediately. Further, the Treasury says that the market itself, businesses, and cryptocurrency exchanges should work together to keep an eye on suspect addresses that might be on the SDN list.

“The digital currency address field on the SDN List provides the unique alphanumeric identifiers (up to 256 characters) for digital currency addresses and identifies the digital currency to which the address corresponds,” explains the OFAC report.

OFAC will use sanctions in the fight against criminal and other malicious actors abusing digital currencies and emerging payment systems as a complement to existing tools, including diplomatic outreach and law enforcement authorities — To strengthen our efforts to combat the illicit use of digital currency transactions under our existing authorities, OFAC may include as identifiers on the SDN List specific digital currency addresses associated with blocked persons.

The Treasury’s OFAC guidance does not go into great detail on how they will block these wallets and addresses or enforce the sanctions. According to the report, OFAC may “alert the public” about suspect digital currency identifiers.

What do you think about the Treasury adding cryptocurrency wallets to the SDN list? Let us know in the comments below.

Images via Shutterstock, OFAC, Pixabay

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Tension in information sharing over GM’s Korea unit audit: South Korea government official

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SEOUL (Reuters) – South Korea’s vice finance minister said on Thursday there is tension between General Motors’ South Korean unit and the Korea Development Bank because the U.S. automaker isn’t sharing internal information about the company needed for the bank to carry out due diligence.

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NEM Foundation Stops Tracking Coins Stolen from Coincheck

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NEM Foundation Stops Tracking Coins Stolen from Coincheck

The NEM Foundation has announced it will no longer track cryptos stolen from the Japanese exchange Coincheck. The Singapore-based organization said it had provided law-enforcement agencies with information from its investigations. It did not explain its decision to end the tracking efforts. According to some estimates, half of the NEM coins that disappeared in the hack have been laundered on the darknet.   

Also read: Coincheck Drops Anonymous Monero, Dash, Zcash

Tracking Provided “Actionable” Data

The NEM.io Foundation, created to promote the NEM cryptocurrency (XEM), has stopped tracking the coins stolen in the Coincheck hack. The Japanese exchange lost some ¥58 billion worth of NEM (~$550 million USD) in January, when it was attacked by hackers. The Singapore-based foundation developed a special technology to identify the accounts the cryptocurrency was sent to.

On Tuesday, the NEM foundation said its efforts have provided some “actionable information” to law-enforcement authorities, the Japan News reported. However, the organization did not reveal any more details about the reasons behind its decision to stop further tracking.

NEM Foundation Stops Tracking Coins Stolen from Coincheck

Recent reports suggest that a lot if the missing XEM cryptos are probably lost forever. A cybersecurity expert told the Japan Times the hackers may have converted up to half of the snatched coins into other cryptocurrency or even fiat money. Masanori Kusunoki, Chief Technology Officer at Japan Digital Design, claims they have been laundered through a website existing on the darknet.

Kusunoki also thinks the site is still being used to process transactions. He believes it’s getting harder to trace these transfers and track the stolen coins. A week after the hack the NEM Foundation said no attempts had been made to trade the cryptos on other exchanges.

In Recovery Mode

For weeks, Coincheck has been trying to recover from one of the biggest hacker attacks. The Japanese exchange has already refunded ¥46.6 billion ($440 million) to compensate about 260,000 of its customers who lost NEM funds. It has also prepared a set of measures to improve its security, informing authorities about its plans in that direction.

The trading platform filed an application with Japan’s Financial Services Agency (FSA) in September to register under the revised legislation regulating payment services in the country. Its registration has been postponed by the attack in January, but also by Coincheck’s policies allowing customers to remain anonymous.

NEM Foundation Stops Tracking Coins Stolen from Coincheck

Japanese media reported this week that the exchange was expected to discontinue support for three cryptocurrencies providing high levels of anonymity – Monero, Dash and Zcash. According to Japan Times, the exchange has recognized the risks posed by these cryptos that can potentially facilitate money laundering. Identifying the recipients of funds transferred on their blockchains is proving impossible.

Coincheck resumed trading on Monday. Customers cannot purchase XMR, ZEC, and DASH, but the platform may offer them to sell their coins at a fixed rate.

Do you think the stolen NEM coins will be found and returned? Share your expectations in the comments section below.

Images courtesy of Shutterstock.

Want to create your own secure cold storage paper wallet? Check our tools section.

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