Binance Block Accounts of Russians With Government Ties

SWANSEA, UK – FEBRUARY 23, 2021: Binance mobile app logo on a smartphone, wallet with gold Bitcoin on yellow background. Popular cryptocurrency exchange

As the ongoing invasion of Ukraine by Russia continues to shape affairs across various sectors globally, the world’s largest crypto platform by trading volume, Binance, has upped its game in enforcing sanctions against Russia and those linked with the country.

Speaking with Bloomberg on Thursday, a top executive at the crypto exchange revealed that the firm was not processing any form of transactions in the accounts of multiple individuals that had ties to the Russian government.

These accounts also included individuals who are relatives of Russian government officials. Per the report, the process had begun right from when the invasion started.

According to the Head of Sanction at Binance, foremost on the list of individuals who have had their accounts blocked is the stepdaughter of Russia’s Foreign Affairs Minister, Sergei Lavrov, and a daughter of President Vladimir Putin’s spokesperson, Dmitry Peskov,

Others affected include the son of Konstantin Malofeev, a Russian oligarch who the US Department of Justice indicted for violating US sanctions.

The first accounts were blocked on March 3, while Malofeev’s son had his account closed this week after he was added to the US Treasury’s Russia-related designations on April 20, according to Bloomberg’s report.

The implementation of these sanctions shows that the crypto community and the world generally are trying to ensure that Russia is unable to evade the number of economic sanctions that have been imposed on it. Just last week, authorities in the US added a crypto mining company with relations to Russia, BitRiver, to its list of sanctioned entities.

Binance Humanitarian Services for Ukrainians

While Binance had earlier shown some restraints in enforcing restrictions on Russia previously, the exchange in recent days has stepped up its game by limiting the availability of its services in the country.

Apart from that, the exchange was in the news earlier in the week for its humanitarian services for Ukrainians. The CZ-led platform had launched a refugee card for Ukrainians to make crypto transactions while also promising to give each registered Ukrainian refugee $75 BUSD (a Stablecoin-backed by the firm).

Overall, the crypto community has played an active role in helping Ukraine fund its defense against Russia through crypto donations that have topped $70 million.