Technology

U.S. imposes sanctions on Russian darknet market and crypto exchange

The U.S. Treasury Department imposed sanctions on Tuesday on a prominent Russia-based darknet market site and a cryptocurrency exchange that it said operates primarily out of Moscow and St. Petersburg. The sanctions against Hydra and currency exchange Garantex, published on the Treasury Department’s website, “send a message today to criminals that you cannot hide on the darknet or their forums,” Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said. According to blockchain researchers, approximately 86% of illicit bitcoin received directly by Russian crypto exchanges in 2019 came from Hydra, which the Treasury Department described as the world’s “largest and most prominent darknet market.” The new sanctions prohibit U.S. persons from making or receiving “any contribution or provision of funds, goods, or services” to Hydra or Garantex, the Treasury said.

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