Binance Counter-Terrorism Specialist Steps Down Amidst Heightened Concerns on Crypto’s Role in Terrorism
Jennifer Hicks, Binance’s Senior Counter-Terrorism Official, has officially resigned from the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, as disclosed on her LinkedIn profile.
Having dedicated nearly two years to Binance, Hicks, an investigative specialist with prior experience at Chainalysis and the U.S. Navy, departs amidst a critical juncture for the crypto industry.
Lawmakers Intensify Scrutiny on Crypto’s Role in Terrorism
Bloomberg was the first to report on Hicks’ departure, raising eyebrows amid recent discussions on cryptocurrency’s role in terrorism financing. This gained particular attention in the U.S., where Hicks seems to have been based during her tenure with Binance.
Reports surfaced alleging that Hamas and other militant groups leveraged crypto to amass funds before a significant attack on Israel.
U.S. lawmakers are now pressing President Joe Biden for insights into the potential involvement of crypto in Hamas’s operations.
Post these revelations, blockchain forensics firm Elliptic countered figures suggesting the extent of crypto fundraising by terrorist groups, asserting a misrepresentation.
The departure of Binance’s Counter-Terrorism Specialist adds a new layer to ongoing discussions about the efficacy of Know Your Customer (KYC) and counter-terrorism measures, particularly within cryptocurrency exchanges.
Several Binance executives quit the exchange this year amid increasing regulatory trouble for the platform and its founder Changpeng Zhao.