Users will need a license to withdraw funds from Tornado Cash, says US Treasury3 min read
Just over a month after imposing a sanction on the digital asset mixer, Tornado Cash, the US Treasury has published a guide with a series of steps for US citizens to withdraw their funds from the protocol.
According to the Treasury, Tornado Cash users in the US must apply for a permit from the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) to withdraw any funds deposited into the mixer prior to the August 8 – sanction date.
“U.S. persons or persons transacting within U.S. jurisdiction may apply for a specific license from OFAC to engage in transactions involving the virtual currency in question,” the Treasury says.
Data about crypto transactions in the mixer
In addition, mixer users will have to “be prepared” to provide relevant information about their transactions. This includes, for example, the sender’s and beneficiary’s wallet addresses, the date and time of the transaction, and the amount of digital assets.
According to the guide, OFAC will have a “favorable” licensing policy for such requests, as long as the transaction does not involve “other sanctioned conduct.” The Treasury also reiterated the ban on US citizens using Tornado Cash:
“Americans are prohibited from engaging in transactions involving Tornado Cash, including through the virtual currency wallet addresses that OFAC has identified.”
Therefore, using the mixer will be in violation of “US sanctions bans unless there is an exemption or authorization from OFAC.”
Tornado Cash was sanctioned by the Treasury for allegedly having its use linked to money laundering.
Interaction with the source code is free
On the other hand, the Treasury stated that it is not prohibited to interact with the open source code of Tornado Cash. That is, if it does not, of course, involve a prohibited transaction.
“For example, US people would not be prohibited from copying open source code and making it available online for others to view, as well as discussing, teaching, or including open source code in written publications such as textbooks, absence of additional facts.”
People from the US can also visit Tornado Cash’s archives and website if it becomes active again.
As Cryptheory reported, at the end of August, Matthew Green, a professor of cryptography at John Hopkins University, in the USA, decided to republish the code on GitHub.
According to the professor, many of his students learn about digital asset privacy concepts and zero-knowledge technology through the mixer’s code.
Furthermore, he stated that he intends to preserve the code for research purposes, not for its deployment.
About the Tornado Cash mixer sanction
Tornado Cash is a decentralized application (dApp) that mixes crypto transactions on the ETH blockchain. That is, it makes it difficult to trace the origin of transactions and funds.
Although its purpose is to ensure privacy, this mixer gained fame after hackers started using it to hide stolen funds in attacks.
The protocol was sanctioned on August 8 by the US Treasury. As a result of the ban, all citizens of the country are banned from carrying out operations through the service.
In addition, any wallet address that used Tornado Cash became the target of sanctions. That is, addresses will not be able to perform or receive transactions to and from any company or person residing in the US.
As a result of the sanction, mixer co-founder Roman Semenov says he was kicked off GitHub. Additionally, USDC stablecoin issuer Circle has frozen funds from wallets linked to Tornado Cash.
Two days after the sanction, Dutch authorities arrested Alexey Pertsev, the developer of Tornado Cash. The 29-year-old was arrested in Amsterdam on suspicion of helping to hide funds from criminals, facilitating money laundering through the mixer.
In late August, Pertsev was denied bail. In addition, it was determined that he would have to spend another 90 days in prison.
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