FinCEN has issued a statement on funding of the terrorist Hamas group following the atrocities the group perpetrated in Israel. FinCEN urged financial services firms to be vigilant in any activity that may be used to fund Hamas. This is inclusive of virtual asset service providers (VASPs) or crypto firms. Recently, it has been reported that digital asset firms and certain wallets had been shut down due to allegations of funding the terrorist group.
To quote the Alert:
“Hamas raises funds to support its operations and members in a variety of ways, including through: support from Iran; private donations; a global portfolio of investments; diverting aid and support from legitimate charities; the control of border crossings and avenues of commerce; racketeering business frameworks; extortionary practices around local populations; and fundraising campaigns involving virtual currency and fictitious charities raising both fiat and virtual currency. Hamas moves funds through the smuggling of physical currency as well as a regional network of complicit money transmitters, exchange houses, and Hizballah-affiliated banks. FinCEN also reminds financial institutions that Hamas and many entities and individuals associated with Hamas are subject to extensive sanctions by the United States.”
FinCEN said the US Department of Treasury is taking all steps necessary to halt any funding of the terrorist group.
In regard to a SARs, or Suspicious Activity Reports, required by financial firms – a special term has been added for Hamas – TFHAMAS.