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United States Treasury Sanctions the Blender.io Bitcoin Mixer for its Use by the North Korean Hacker Group, Lazarus

Summary:

  • The United States Treasury Department has actually approved a cryptocurrency mixer for the very first time
  • Blender.io has actually been contributed to the OFAC’s SDN list for helping in illegal deals that posture a danger to the United States and for assisting the North Korean hacker group, Lazarus, in laundering taken funds
  • The United States Treasury Department has actually likewise included 4 Ethereum addresses connected to the Lazarus Group to the SDN list

The United States Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) has for the very first time approved a cryptocurrency mixer.

According to the main statement by the OFAC workplace, the Bitcoin mixer of Blender.io has actually been approved by the United States Treasury for being utilized ‘by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea(DPRK) to support its destructive cyber activities and money-laundering of taken virtual currency.’

In specific, the sanctions statement concentrates on the Lazarus Group that performed the biggest DeFi break-in to date on the Ronin Network and Axie Infinity, worth $615 million. Mixer was supposedly utilized in ‘the laundering procedure for DPRK’s Axie Infinity break-in, processing over $205 million in illegal profits.’

Under Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Brian E. Nelson, described:

Today, for the very first time ever, Treasury is approving a virtual currency mixer. Virtual currency mixers that help illegal deals position a danger to U.S. nationwide security interests. We are doing something about it versus illegal monetary activity by the DPRK and will not enable state-sponsored thievery and its money-laundering enablers to go unanswered.

Like most of blockchain mixers offered, Blender.io gets numerous Bitcoin deals and blends them together prior to sending them to their supreme locations at a cost. Mixer does not ensure that the outcomes of the blending will totally conceal the stemming address of the deal.

The United States Treasury has actually Updated its OFAC SDN List

Additionally, the United States Treasury OFAC workplace has actually upgraded its Special Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons (SDN) list to consist of 4 extra Ethereum wallets utilized by the Lazarus Group to wash the rest of the taken earnings of the March 2022 Axie Infinity hack. The OFAC workplace has actually even more offered a complete list of approved addresses on its site.

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