The Tron blockchain has gained popularity among Iran-backed militant groups, overtaking the Bitcoin network.
Faster and cheaper than Bitcoin, Tron has overtaken its rival as a platform for cryptocurrency transfers linked to groups designated as terrorist organizations by Israel, the United States and other countries, according to Reuters.
Journalists analyzed cryptocurrency seizures by Israeli security services since 2021. The results showed a sharp increase in attacks on Tron wallets and a decrease in Bitcoin wallet seizures.
“Earlier it was Bitcoin and now our data shows that these terrorist organizations tend to increasingly favor Tron.”
Mriganka Pattnaik, CEO of New York-based blockchain analysis firm Merkle Science
In total, Israel’s National Bureau of Counter-Terrorism Financing (NBCTF) froze 143 Tron wallets between July 2021 and Oct. 2023, wallets it believed were associated with a “designated terrorist organization” or used for a “serious terrorist crime.”
Yet nearly two-thirds of Tron wallets (87) have been seized by Israel this year, including 39 wallets that Israel said in June belonged to Lebanese Hezbollah and 26 it said in July belonged to Palestinian Islamic Jihad ally Hamas, which joined in the attack on Israel.
In Oct. 2023, the Israeli Police Cyber Unit, in cooperation with the Ministry of Defense, the Israel Security Agency and other national intelligence agencies, successfully froze cryptocurrency accounts used by Hamas.
The Binance exchange cooperated with the Israeli authorities, facilitating the search and closure of terrorist accounts. The seized funds will be transferred to the state treasury.