UKRAINIAN GROUP RAISES BITCOIN DONATIONS OF $4M DURING RUSSIAN ATTACK
LONDON – A Ukrainian volunteer group providing equipment for the army has received more than $4 million in bitcoin donations since Russia invaded on Thursday.
Elliptic, a London-based company, stated earlier this month that donations to Ukrainian hacking and volunteer groups have soared due to Russian troops advancing near the border. However, Elliptic has been able to track transfers of larger amounts to these groups since the invasion.
Come Back Alive; a Ukrainian volunteer organization, received $3,000,000 in bitcoin donations on Friday. Elliptic stated that the identities of the donors were not known. Bitcoin and other tokens can be sent anonymously.
As Russian forces advanced on Kyiv, missiles struck the city. Families were forced to hide in bomb shelters.
Come Back Alive, a Kyiv-based company, claims it supplies kits and medical supplies for the Ukrainian army, including drones. However, Come Back Alive did not immediately respond when we asked for a comment.
Reuters was informed earlier this month by the group that it had raised $167,000 in cryptocurrency through more than a dozen transactions, which took place between August and February. At the time, Come Back Alive said the funds remained unused and that it was saving cryptocurrency-denominated donations for “future projects.”
Because anonymity is a key feature of online fundraising, the rise in donations demonstrates the increasing role of cryptocurrency in this area.
To combat money laundering, Ukraine tightened controls on funds transfers in 2020. They require ID verification for certain domestic cash transfers. Cross-border transfers also require mandatory monitoring.