The military wing of Hamas, the Palestinian Sunni-Islamist fundamentalist group listed as a terror organization by the United States and European Union, has been relying on Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies for quite some time now. However, according to new research by the crypto-watchdog Elliptic Research, Hamas is implementing very complex mechanisms to ensure that the donations and funding they receive through Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are untraceable.
The report stated that regulators were finding it difficult to keep tabs on the organization’s fundraising programs. The report also suggested that this inference indirectly highlighted the difficulties faced by authorities in checking terrorist organizations, owing to the use of crypto-assets.
Izz el-Deen al-Qassam Brigades, the Gaza-based military arm of Hamas, started accepting digital currencies in late January 2019 and has been calling for donations and funds through the medium. According to a Reuters report, the organization initially had only one digital address, where donors were asked to send their funds to.
However, after almost two months, the wing has now implemented a new method to obstruct the traceability of these transactions. In recent weeks, the funding website of Hamas has generated new digital wallet addresses for every transaction made. This effectively means that regulators will not be able to effectively track or monitor the transactions made on the website.
According to Elliptic Research,
“A single digital wallet can be red-flagged to cryptocurrency exchanges, in theory allowing them to prevent funds moving through their systems to that destination. But a different wallet for each donation makes this so-called tagging far more complicated.”
However, the amount of money received through the portal over the last two weeks amounted to only 0.6 BTC, which is approximately $3,300. Since its inception, the portal has managed to collect $7,400.
Hamas’ spokesperson however, declined to comment on Elliptic’s research, according to Reuters.
Subscribe to AMBCrypto’s Newsletter
Bitcoin [BTC] dust does not damage the owner or network, explains Andreas Antonopoulos
Febin Jose is a full-time journalist/editor at AMBCrypto. He believes that cryptocurrencies will navigate a volatile future and that Arsenal can still win a title. Lives around the “if it sounds like writing, I rewrite it” mantra.