Iranian Authorities to Ban Crypto Exchanges

New wave of government censorship spread on the cryptocurrency in the country
04 July 2018   1157

Presumably, since May of this year, Iranian users are experiencing problems with access to crypto exchanges and other exchange platforms, Coindesk reports.

In particular, there are difficulties with access to Binance, Blockchain and LocalBitcoins, even when using VPN and other methods.

One of the Iranian enthusiasts, on condition of anonymity, told that it was all about new sanctions that would be imposed on the country in August and November.

Many people are using it [bitcoin] as a hedge instrument because buying BTC is easier than going into the black market to buy yourself US dollars.

Iranian Crypto Enthusiast

Another factor that spurred the Iranians' interest in crypto-currencies - annual inflation of rial reached 127 percent.

Most experts agree that the economic situation forces the Iranian authorities to restrictions on crypto-currencies. So, in April, as part of the anti-money laundering program in Iran, financial institutions were prohibited from working with cryptocurrencies. In May, the head of the economic committee under the Iranian government, Mohammed Reza Purbrahimi, warned the currency traders about the harm to the country's economy if they continue to spend billions of dollars on international sites.

Now, without warning, official Tehran has started a policy of restricting access. Anonymous sources also report that the government is inspecting user traffic with the help of tools for deep packet analysis. Thus, it plans to block access to exchanges even with the help of VPN.

Another source says the ban on the purchase and sale of cryptocurrency for rials, although people continue to do it in face-to-face meetings. When he was asked to describe the mood among the enthusiasts of cryptocurrency in Iran, he replied in one word: "Uncertainty."

All these events mark a sharp turn for the country that was on the verge of a cryptocurrency boom (in 2017 CoinDesk published a report according to which the Iranians believed in support of the crypto currency by the government). Moreover, just as in February of this year, blockchain startups worked actively with Iranian regulators to legalize cryptocurrency in the country.

China to Finance Hacker Attacks on Exchanges, - FireEye

Experts believe that the victims of APT41 are industry participants, the development of which is a priority in the current Chinese five-year period
08 August 2019   317

The hacker group APT41 attacks companies in the areas of healthcare, telecommunications, fintech, media, and cryptocurrency exchanges. This activity is funded by the Chinese government, according to analysts of cybersecurity company FireEye.

Experts believe that the victims of APT41 are industry participants, the development of which is a priority in the current Chinese five-year period.

Industries Targeted by APT41
Industries Targeted by APT41

At the same time, APT41 pursues its own goals, extracting financial benefits from attacks, which is unusual for other groups under the Chinese government, according to FireEye.

APT41 is known to include at least two people with the pseudonyms Chzan Xuiguan and Wolfji. The group probably has connections with other hacker organizations like BARIUM and Winnti.

FireEye also evaluated at what time of the day the APT41 attacked the gaming industry (its core target) and businesses from other areas. It turned out that this was happening outside the framework of a standard working day - probably these people, among other things, have the main job.

APT41 Operational Times
APT41 Operational Times

According to the UN Security Council, hackers under the DPRK government stole about $ 2 billion from banking institutions and cryptocurrency exchanges.