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OFAC focuses on Bitcoin addresses for the first time in new sanctions

On 28 November 2018 the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) added two new Iran-based individuals to the SDN List for their alleged financial facilitation of the SamSam ransomware scheme. Notably, for the first time, OFAC has traced bitcoin activity to the public addresses of the sanctioned individuals. The two sanctioned individuals reportedly assisted the hackers of SamSam to convert millions of dollars in ransomed bitcoin to Iranian rials using the Bitcoin addresses 149w62rY42aZBox8fGcmqNsXUzSStKeq8C and 1AjZPMsnmpdK2Rv9KQNfMurTXinscVro9V.

Due to this development, OFAC has added ‘Digital Currency Address’ as an indicator on the SDN List.

To read the press release from the U.S. Department of the Treasury please click here.

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