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Israel Cracks Down on Crypto Accounts Tied to Hamas Funding

Israel, in collaboration with the Binance crypto exchange, freezes cryptocurrency accounts believed to be involved in gathering donations for Hamas following their recent attacks from Gaza. The move underlines the challenges posed by the use of cryptocurrencies in funding illegal activities.

Escalation in the Israel-Palestinian Conflict

Tensions have risen as Hamas launched severe attacks from Gaza into Israel. This recent flare-up is considered one of the most significant escalations between Israel and Palestine in recent years.

Online Campaign for Crypto Donations

According to a Reuters report, as per Israeli police, Hamas took to social media to gather donations through cryptocurrency for its operations. Immediate action was taken by the Police Cyber Unit and the Ministry of Defense, with the help of Binance crypto exchange, to locate and seize these accounts. The seized funds will be redirected to the state treasury.

No Concrete Details Disclosed

The police's statement did not specify the number of accounts frozen or the total value of the crypto assets seized.

Binance’s Collaborative Stance

Binance highlighted its ongoing collaboration with global law enforcement agencies. The spokesperson stated that they have been working tirelessly to assist in thwarting terror financing. The data utilized to identify individuals and entities associated with certain organizations is gathered through intelligence from law enforcement and other investigative tools.

Hamas and Cryptocurrency

Hamas had previously promoted cryptocurrency as a mode for fundraising. However, they announced in April that they would cease accepting donations via Bitcoin due to increased adversarial actions against their donors.

Israel’s Previous Actions on Crypto Accounts

Reuters highlighted that since 2021, Israel has frozen approximately 190 cryptocurrency accounts on Binance, some of which were believed to be linked to the Islamic State, and many were suspected to be connected to Palestinian firms associated with Hamas.