October 26, 2023

Elliptic Says No Evidence for Hamas’ Reception of Many Crypto Donations

Crypto Donations for Hamas

Crypto Donations for Hamas

Blockchain forensic company Elliptic recently issued a statement stating that there is no significant evidence that Hamas is receiving many cryptocurrency donations to support its violent attacks against Israel.

The amounts collected by Hamas through cryptocurrency donations have been extremely small, according to Elliptic.

The company’s statement was made in response to several articles and letters written by US lawmakers and The Wall Street Journal, which Elliptic claims have misinterpreted the data to suggest that cryptocurrency is widely used to fund Hamas’ military operations.

Elliptic cited a Hamas cryptocurrency fundraising campaign operated by Gaza Now, a pro-Hamas news outlet, as an example.

The campaign has only raised $21,000 since the Hamas attack on Israel on October 7. However, $9,000 was frozen by stablecoin issuer Tether, while another $2,000 was frozen after it was sent to a cryptocurrency exchange, presumably to cash out.

Elliptic contacted WSJ to rectify a statement that initially claimed that between Aug. 2021 and June 2023, Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad raised over $130 million in cryptocurrency. Following Elliptic’s intervention, WSJ corrected the statement to read “as much as $93 million” in an October 10 update.

US lawmakers have raised concerns about cryptocurrency posing a “national security threat” to the United States and its allies. They have urged Congress and the Biden administration to take “strong action” to address the risks associated with cryptocurrencies facilitating illicit activities.

In April 2023, Hamas suspended cryptocurrency fundraising through Bitcoin (BTC), citing concerns about donors’ safety and well-being. Israel’s National Bureau for Counter-Terror Financing also began issuing seizure orders for cryptocurrency wallets tied to Hamas in 2021. The bureau also collaborated with exchanges to freeze accounts used by Hamas.

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