Russia’s KGB Successor Warns Terrorists are Turning to Cryptocurrencies

Anatol Antonovici
Terror groups are increasingly relying on bitcoin, according to the chief of Russia's federal security service. | Source: Shutterstock

By CCN: Terrorist organizations getting support in the form of cryptocurrency are becoming the norm, according to Russia’s FSB director Alexander Bortnikov.

As per local news portal RBC, citing media agency Tass, the chief of Russia’s Federal Security Service (the FSB’s successor) reported on the latest updates in the international terrorist networks at a meeting of the heads of security agencies of Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) member states.

“Electronic payment systems and cryptocurrencies are increasingly being used by terrorists to move money received from some states and organizations that support the global terrorist network,” Bortnikov noted.

He said that terrorist financing relies on direct proceeds from the illegal sale of oil, the slave trade, and other criminal activities. The FSB chief also claimed that the primary source for supplying militants is the informal value transfer system referred to as ‘hawala’. The latter enables involved parties to conduct transfers through brokerage netting without using financial documents.

Last year, Bortnikov told Russian media that international terrorist organizations were improving the systems related to cryptocurrencies, electronic banking, and encrypted communication to defend against special services.

The FSB chief stated that there were about 5,000 terrorist group members close to the borders of the CIS countries in the north region of Afghanistan.

Earlier this month, CCN reported that ISIS used Bitcoin to finance the suicide bombing in Sri Lanka, which resulted in 253 civilian deaths, as per blockchain intelligence firm Whitestream.

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