A decade ago or so people seemed surprised when I warned about links between Cryto and North Korea (or even Russia) military funds.
Now the U.S. Deputy National Cyber Adviser is very publicly stating one-third of North Korea’s missile program is funded by Crypto.
Anne Neuberger bases her analysis on the fact that $1bn in Crypto was stolen just in the first nine months of 2022 — it’s a total mess.
This reminds me of an old consulting engagement, which I’ve written about before.
I had been parachuted into a bank to help risk managers navigate Crypto. They needed to know whether to green light a giant power company giving them pressure to invest in bitcoin mining on massive scale (energy sector generally is run/owned by for-profit bankers in America).
“That’s all we need to know” I remember bank executives saying after I asked if they really wanted the blood of North Korean missile launches to be on their hands.
That power company was given a giant no.
An idea of “blood Crypto” that I presented to them wasn’t meant to be new, but something more like a new chapter for an old tragic story.
Having long studied anonymity games for weapons proliferation among global hate groups (e.g. “blood diamond” money laundering to fund mercenaries and coups in Africa) it seemed somewhat obvious to me where Crypto was going.
People often told me they didn’t see a dark Crypto future, until I explained the past reality of blood diamonds.
I guess more to the point, many people STILL wear diamond assets around publicly like they just don’t see “it”, and many people STILL boast about owning Crypto assets.
The evolution from diamond crimes to Crypto crimes shouldn’t seem abrupt to anyone observing particularly onerous billionaires in the news.
If you remember, websites were setup by white South Africans specifically to allow unregulated international movement of racist mining wealth (PayPal was a “fast and easy” money transfer service intended to escape humanitarian regulations).
From there Crypto really became a minor change to expand global risk. This also probably explains why white South Africans STILL so brazenly promote toxic odious Crypto mines today even though it should bring to mind their parent’s washing of blood diamonds.