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OFAC Sanctions Crypto Mixer Sinbad for Suspected Links to North Korean Cyber Attackers

US Treasury Office Slaps Sanctions on Cryptocurrency Mixer, for Activities Linked to North Korean Hackers

The U.S Department of Treasury Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) recently took action against cryptocurrency mixing platform,, denouncing it as a major tool aiding money laundering actions conducted by the Lazarus Group, a criminal syndicate reportedly associated with North Korea. Furthermore, the notorious is not only linked with backdoor ventures involving the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea but is also reported to have processed transactions associated with drug trafficking and sales on infamous darknet marketplaces.

OFAC Targets for Assisting in Cleaning Funds Looted from Harmony Bridge, Axie, and Atomic Wallet

FinCEN and OFAC, the Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, have lately shifted their gaze towards the seemingly innocent digital currency mixing protocols. The latest in their crosshairs followed previous suspect platforms named Tornado Cash and According to the OFAC,’s primary objective is hiding transaction details, thereby effectively shielding the real movement of funds within the blockchain.

The OFAC investigation led to the shocking uncovering of’s involvement with the North Korean hacking group, Lazarus Group. The mixer was also tangentially related to funds thefts from the Harmony Horizon Bridge and Axie Infinity hacks. The OFAC has declared as the Lazarus Group’s mixer of choice, succeeding Sinbad was implicated in laundering a significant portion of the $100 million cyber-looted on June 3, 2023, from users of Atomic Wallet.

Deputy Secretary of the Treasury, Wally Adeyemo, made it unequivocally clear, that such mixing services that enable criminal actors like the Lazarus Group to clear stolen properties will face severe repercussions. In his words, the Treasury Department, along with U.S. government partners, is robustly prepared to employ all possible strategies in preventing virtual currency mixers, like Sinbad, from facilitating red flag activities.

Following the FinCEN’s recent update in October, new regulations were implemented that mandate financial institutions to report on dealings involving international cryptocurrency mixing services. Back then, the Director of FinCEN, Andrea Gacki and Adeyemo, were adamantly committed to combating illicit operations linked to digital currency mixing services.

Before these rules came into play, US citizens who undertook specific transactions with the entity assigned today might themselves be susceptible to sanctions, stated the Treasury’s OFAC. It had been actively executing enforcement measures against mixers like Blender and Tornado Cash. Simultaneously, the OFAC had been recognizing and flagging numerous sanctioned cryptocurrency addresses across a multitude of networks.

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Frequently asked Questions

FAQ: OFAC Sanctions Crypto Mixer Sinbad for Suspected Links to North Korean Cyber Attackers

1. What is Sinbad and why has it been sanctioned by OFAC?

Answer: Sinbad is a cryptocurrency mixer that has been sanctioned by the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) due to suspected links to North Korean cyber attackers. OFAC believes that Sinbad facilitated illicit transactions and money laundering activities on behalf of North Korean hackers.

2. What are the potential consequences for Sinbad as a result of these sanctions?

Answer: The sanctions imposed by OFAC can have severe consequences for Sinbad. It may face restrictions on accessing the U.S. financial system, freezing of its assets, and potential criminal charges. Additionally, individuals or entities that engage in transactions with Sinbad may also face legal repercussions.

3. How did OFAC establish the suspected links between Sinbad and North Korean cyber attackers?

Answer: OFAC conducts thorough investigations and gathers intelligence, including financial transaction data and other evidence, to establish connections between sanctioned entities and illicit activities. In the case of Sinbad, specific patterns and indicators were identified, suggesting its involvement in supporting North Korean cyber attackers.

4. What are the implications of Sinbad’s suspected links to North Korean cyber attackers?

Answer: Sinbad’s suspected links to North Korean cyber attackers raise concerns about the facilitation of illicit activities and money laundering through cryptocurrency channels. It highlights the need for increased vigilance in the crypto space to prevent financing of malicious cyber activities by rogue nations.

5. How does this OFAC sanction contribute to the broader efforts against North Korean cyber threats?

Answer: By sanctioning Sinbad, OFAC sends a strong message that entities engaging in illicit activities on behalf of North Korean cyber attackers will face severe consequences. This serves as a deterrent and disrupts the financial networks that support North Korea’s malicious cyber operations, thereby contributing to broader efforts to counter their cyber threats.

6. What steps can the cryptocurrency community take to prevent such incidents in the future?

Answer: The cryptocurrency community can enhance due diligence practices, implement robust Know Your Customer (KYC) and Anti-Money Laundering (AML) procedures, and actively collaborate with regulatory authorities and law enforcement agencies. Identifying and reporting suspicious transactions promptly can help prevent illicit activities and mitigate the risk of being associated with sanctioned entities like Sinbad.

7. Are there any other entities or individuals under investigation for similar activities?

Answer: While specific details regarding ongoing investigations may not be disclosed, it is common for regulatory authorities to continuously monitor and investigate entities suspected of involvement in illicit activities. OFAC, along with other agencies, remains vigilant in identifying and targeting entities supporting malicious cyber activities, including those with potential links to North Korea.