Technology

Analysis: Crypto exchanges won’t bar Russians, raising fears of sanctions backdoor

Some of the world’s biggest cryptocurrency exchanges are staying put in Russia, breaking ranks with mainstream finance in a decision that experts say weakens Western attempts to isolate Moscow following the invasion of Ukraine. Western sanctions, which aim to squeeze Russia’s economy and sever it from the global financial system, have forced companies and financial firms in their droves to halt business in the country. But many of the world’s largest crypto exchanges – including Binance and U.S.-based Kraken and Coinbase – have stopped short of a blanket ban on Russian clients, despite a plea from the Ukrainian government for one. They said they would screen users and block anyone targeted by sanctions. The standoff illustrates the ideological gulf between the traditional financial sector and the world of cryptocurrencies, whose roots lie in libertarian ideals and distrust of governments.

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OODA Analyst

OODA Analyst

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