BREAKING: As Israel cracks down on wallets maintained by Hamas, Indian officials on toes to prevent repeat of 2021

On Tuesday (Oct 10), the cyber unit of Israel Police seized many online accounts maintained by the Hamas terror group who had crowdfunded cryptocurrencies.

During an investigation, it was found that Hamas collected funds by stealing from “pro-Israel” countries…..CONTINUE READING HERE

Times of India (TOI) newspaper on Wednesday (Oct 11) reported citing Indian security agency sources that they have intensified their surveillance efforts in order to prevent a repeat of what happened in 2021 when cryptocurrencies of a Delhi-based individual were stolen by Hamas.

The case in New Delhi was the first instance of Hamas’ activity in India.

In late 2021, the Delhi Police’s Special Cell was probing a cryptocurrency theft worth 40 million rupees ($4,80, 900 approx.) siphoned off from the wallet of a West Delhi businessman.

In the complaint, the businessman claimed that some unknown thieves transferred his Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Bitcoin cash from his crypto wallet.

Findings of Delhi Police’s probe

Though they were able to trace a few recipient wallet IDs, they were unable to zero in on the user’s identity.

At the same time, Israel’s intelligence agency, Mossad, communicated—as part of routine intelligence exchange with their Indian counterparts—to Indian intel officers about some suspect wallets operated by terrorist groups for funding.

Many of these online wallets were being used by the al Qassam brigades of Hamas, the Palestinian terror group.

A breakthrough arrived when the Special Cell’s Intelligence Fusion & Strategic Ops (IFSO) unit ran a match on the wallets. It found that several wallets that had received the Bitcoin and Ethereum assets from Delhi were operated by the cyber wing of Hamas.

After finding a link, the Special Cell officers communicated the findings of their probe to the relevant authorities.
Officials on alert

Speaking to TOI paper on Tuesday, former DCP (Special Cell) KPS Malhotra, whose team investigated the case, said, “Yes, our investigation had led us to several wallets linked to the al Qassam brigades.”

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He said that one of the frozen wallets belonged to Naseer Ibrahim Abdulla in Gaza and to Hamas operatives like Ahmed Marzooq in Giza and Ahmed QH Safi in Ramallah.

Also read | Israel close to forming unity govt following Hamas terror attack

“The cryptocurrencies were routed through various private wallets and finally landed in these suspected wallets,” the officer was quoted as saying…..CONTINUE READING HERE