European Eye on Radicalization
Joining EER on the podcast today is Dr. Hans-Jakob Schindler, the Senior Director of the Counter Extremism Project (CEP), to speak about the use of cryptocurrency and related technologies by terrorists and other malign actors.
Dr. Schindler began by describing what cryptocurrency is: the philosophy that underpins it, its origins, and how it has become more popular over time. He then went on to describe why crypto is used—the advantages it provides—and how it is used by groups like the Islamic State (ISIS) and Iran’s Hezbollah to move money, even in states where the technological infrastructure would not seem to support it. There is an interaction between crypto and the older hawala system, which Dr. Schindler explained. The use of crypto by outlaw states such as Russia and North Korea to circumvent sanctions was also touched upon. And the regulation of the crypto space was discussed in detail: the resistance of the industry, the steps already taken by the U.S. and E.U., and what else could be done, as well as the potential adaptations terrorists will adopt in the future.