Iran Is Using Bitcoin Mining to Circumvent Sanctions, According to Elliptic – Mining Bitcoin News
Bitcoin mining is a lucrative business, and it is attracting miners from all over the world. Now, a new study from researchers at Elliptic, a startup that helps law enforcement agencies monitor and regulate bitcoin transactions, has found that an increasing amount of bitcoin mining is taking place in Iran, where the government is using the activity to skirt sanctions imposed by the US and EU.
Elliptic, a UK-based bitcoin mining firm, claims that Iran is using the mining of bitcoin as a way to evade sanctions. Elliptic claims to have identified a number of attempts by Iranian entities to book mining equipment through a third party, thereby evading the scrutiny of international financial sanctions. Elliptic’s current investigations into the activities of the mining firms show that these entities are not engaging in any mining activity but are instead attempting to route funds to accounts that are not under the control of the entities. Elliptic recommends that these entities refrain from such activities and instead engage in other economically viable business activities which are not subject to international sanctions.
Elliptic, the cryptocurrency research and intelligence firm, recently published a report about Iran’s use of cryptocurrency mining to circumvent restrictions on its economy. The report’s findings include: 1. Iran is the dominant player in the cryptocurrency mining sector of the global market. 2. It has approximately 60% of the hash rate of the overall industry (which is currently at 12.2% as of May 2018). 3. The country is using cryptocurrency mining to help it circumvent sanctions.
Iran is using bitcoin mining to circumvent and mitigate the effects of economic sanctions imposed on the country by the US and other countries since 2006, according to a new study by Elliptic, a company that analyzes blockchain and financial crime. The country uses bitcoin mining indirectly to export some of its energy reserves, which are difficult to export due to the aforementioned sanctions.
Report: Iran uses bitcoin mining to evade sanctions
Iran is using bitcoin (BTC) as a tool to circumvent and mitigate the effects of the harsh sanctions it faces, according to a new study by Elliptic, a blockchain-based crime analysis company. According to the study, Iran accounts for 4.5 percent of the total amount of bitcoins in the world. The country would use bitcoins indirectly to export its energy reserves. Iran is one of the few countries in the world with rich oil reserves. However, this country’s ability to export and use oil has been severely limited by the near-total embargo on oil exports imposed on the country by the United States over the past decade. This has led the government to consider bitcoin mining as a possible tool to convert the energy potential into a product that can generate revenue for the country. Looks like it worked. Iran’s aging electricity structure is struggling to cope with pressure from the mining industry. Electricity rates are quite low, which has contributed to the craze of mining cryptocurrencies. Elliptic’s report shows that Chinese mining companies have taken to this fact and even worked with the military to get their assets safely into the country. But how exactly is Iran using bitcoin to get around the restrictions? In a globalized economy, Iran is effectively utilizing its energy reserves around the world by using its oil to generate electricity that is converted into bitcoins at the hands of miners in Iran. In this way, Iran indirectly gains insight into its oil reserves through potential bitcoin buyers and users.
Iran and Iran-based miners benefit, but the report also raises significant compliance issues related to the use of the Bitcoin network (BTC) for transactions. Elliptic argues that all institutions and individuals who ship bitcoin can violate these international sanctions. The report states: There’s a… Probability that the sender will pay a transaction fee to a bitcoin miner in Iran for each bitcoin transaction. Financial institutions should also be wary of deposits in cryptocurrencies from Iranian miners looking to cash in on their profits. There are a number of initiatives aimed at preventing these potentially illegal activities. Marathon, a North American-based bitcoin mining company, recently launched the first OFAC-compliant bitcoin mining pool, which only mines compliant transactions. More such initiatives may emerge in the future as a result of the institutionalization of BTC as an asset class, which now provides an incentive for institutions to protect themselves from inadvertent participation in these illicit activities. What do you think of Elliptic’s latest report? Tell us what you think in the comments section below. Photo credit: Shutterstock, Pixabay, Wiki Commons Denial: This article is for information only. It is not a direct offer or invitation to buy or sell, nor is it a recommendation or endorsement of any goods, services or companies. Bitcoin.com does not provide investment, tax, legal, or accounting advice. Neither the company nor the author shall be liable, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services referred to in this article.
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