- Binance joins concerned authorities to track $4.2 million in crypto donations to Russia.
- Chainalysis found Telegram posts from Rusich, Rybar, and Southfront.
- Researcher said the funds were used to pay for thermal imaging scopes and UAVs.
Binance’s investigations team joins forces with other authorities to track nearly $4.2 million in crypto donations made to Russian militias in Ukraine during the Russia-Ukraine war.
The investigating team at Binance and the cryptocurrency-tracking companies helped trace contributions to the Russian war effort, which frequently started with open posts on the messaging app Telegram asking for crowdsourced money.
Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao retweeted:
In Quote by “Mr. Hillmann” @binance security team of over 150 fmr security experts and investigators from FBI, US secret service, IRS, Europol are fighting across the globe to keep illicit funds out of #Crypto @cz_binanceThat’s why we use #Binance https://t.co/A2WCaQDLON
— CryptoBala (@cryptoBala01) October 9, 2022
The blockchain analytics platform, Chainalysis, discovered Telegram posts from groups including the paramilitary group Rusich and pro-Russian media sites Rybar and Southfront, all of which posted cryptocurrency contribution addresses to Telegram.
The analysis included various findings from cryptocurrency-tracing firms like Chainalysis, Elliptic, and TRM Labs, including investigators at Binance. Furthermore, Binance’s research team discovered that $4.2 million worth of cryptocurrency had been transferred to Russian military organizations since February 2022.
There may be a chance that the overall funding may be far greater than either Binance’s or Chainalysis’ figure. It is speculated that some of the organizations mentioned vary from those listed in Chainalysis’ report.
The former deputy of Ukraine’s Cyber Police, Serhii Kropyva, reacted to this by adding:
With the close cooperation of companies like Chainalysis and Binance, we can see all the wallets involved in this criminal activity, this money flows of millions of dollars. But we can, unfortunately, see that the transfer is continuing all the time.
Binance mentioned MOO Veche, a pro-Russian “cultural heritage” organization that has organized fundraising events for weapons that resemble those purchased by the organizations, Chainalysis mentioned.
Additionally, Elliptic tracked $1.7 million in cryptocurrency donations to the group, significantly more than the other researchers, even though Binance, TRM Labs, and Elliptic all mention MOO Veche as a significant fundraiser.
Chainalysis researcher, Andrew Fierman concluded the speculation by stating that it’s not like Russia bought new tanks with donations. The funds were instead used to pay for thermal imaging scopes and UAVs.
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