US Treasury Prohibits Use of Tornado Cash Crypto Mixer by Americans
On Monday, the US Treasury said that it has placed sanctions on Tornado Cash, a business that “mixes” virtual currencies, calling it “a danger to US national security.”
Tornado Cash conceals the sender, receiver, and other participants in a trade on the ethereum blockchain. As per the Office of Foreign Assets Control, over $7 billion has been laundered via it since 2019, including $455 million looted by the Lazarus Group, a North Korean state-sponsored cyber – espionage outfit.
Brian Nelson, Under Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Brian Nelson noted in a remark, “Tornado Cash has multiple times failed to set up necessary security measures built to prevent it from laundering funds for cybercriminal groups on a routine basis and always without basic risk mitigation measures.”
Starting Monday, any Tornado Cash assets and property holdings in the United States or in the custody of U.S. citizens must be declared to OFAC.
Although Tornado Cash did not respond directly to a request for clarification, they did retweet a user who said, “Seems like USDC has definitely banned the Tornado Cash contracts, implying if you have USDC put in Tornado you will not be able to access it any longer even though everything you did was absolutely valid and lawful.”