Terror financing in Southeast Asian countries has increased substantially among pro-Islamic State terror groups. In the Philippines, IS-linked terror groups have conducted first transactions in cryptocurrencies. The critics of crypto have always accused the digital form of currency of facilitating illicit activities, including terror financing. Terrorism and crypto have been a hugely debated subject in the industry. However, cash is still considered to be the primary mode of funding terror activities.
The Philippines is yet to enforce anti-terror funding regulations.
The Philippines has yet to implement Anti-Money Laundering and anti Financing of Terrorism laws related to cryptocurrencies. Currently, this is a big challenge for the Southeast Asian country as crypto is being used by terrorism. During the Marawi Siege, reports of crypto financing in terrorism by this analyst and Drei Toledo was largely ignored by regulatory authorities. The financiers of terrorism, which remain unknown to this day, were responsible for 1,009 casualties of Philippine security troops back in 2017 alone. The Philippines authorities need to set regulations to counter terror financing in the near future.
Cryptocurrency is being used by terrorism, but cash is still the king.
Regulating the crypto industry has been a question since the invention of bitcoin by Satoshi Nakamoto. Several countries have been successful in regulating and exploring crypto by providing a safe environment for the industry, but most countries have failed to do so. Regulating crypto is not possible for any country entirely as bitcoin is decentralized. Bitcoin is used all over the world despite what regulations around cryptocurrencies are. President Rodrigo Duterte has set a high bar in waging an all-out war against terrorist organizations. However, the country’s financial regulatory authorities are still lagging in countering terror financing. Currently, several nations are implementing crypto regulation guidelines as proposed by the Financial Action Task Force.