Mossad wants its Bitcoin specialist

A cryptophile in the Mossad – The intelligence agency is looking for an expert in cryptocurrencies. Israel has a keen interest in them as Hamas uses Bitcoin (BTC) and some cryptocurrencies to circumvent the financial isolation imposed on it.

Bitcoin in the wallets of spies

Mossad, is recruiting a cryptocurrency expert with at least 3 years of fintech experience. Thejob posting states that applicants will need to have “a deep understanding of technology and expertise in the world of fintech, e-commerce, DEFI and digital currencies.”

What will be the role of this expert within the Israeli intelligence agency? The latter did not give details about the duties of the position. It simply stated that the candidate’s role will be “the direction, initiation, planning and support of systems development activities,” a vague description open to multiple interpretations. For the Israeli news site Ynet, the Mossad is also reportedly interested in cryptocurrencies to pay its agents anonymously, or to buy equipment.

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Israel – Palestine: the cryptocurrency war

Israel is also taking a close interest in Bitcoin and some altcoins because, Hamas is using cryptocurrencies to raise funds on social media. Hamas conducted a fundraising campaign in 2021, following the 11-day war that devastated the Gaza Strip in May 2021.

Classified as a terrorist organization by Israel and its allies such as the United States or European Union countries, Hamas is under a financial embargo from them, and cryptocurrencies allow it to bypass this blockage.

In 2019, researchers at Elliptic reported that Hamas’ armed wing used multiple Bitcoin wallet addresses to collect donations, in order to make it harder for Israeli authorities to track such funding.

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According to a 2020 report by theInternational Classification of Disease-International Institute for Counter-Terrorism, crypto wallets purportedly linked to Hamas, as well as the Iran-affiliated al-Nasser Salah al-Deen Brigades, received about 3,370 BTC over the course of four years.

On July 7, 2021, Israeli Defense Minister Benny Ganz authorized Israeli security forces to seize 84 crypto wallets that may belong to the militant wing of Hamas. These addresses are believed to have received $7.7 million in cryptocurrencies according to Elliptic.

Israel and its allies want to develop newew systems that allow them to track cryptocurrency transactions. The Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), a financial intelligence and oversight agency in the United States, has issued a request for proposals for a blockchain tracking tool. National security seems to legitimize the financial voyeurism of state institutions until today.

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