Cryptocurrency and Bitcoin donations to Ukrainian charities
A new study by blockchain
analytics company Elliptic indicates that Ukrainian NGOs are seeing a sharp
rise in Bitcoin donations due to mounting tensions along Ukraine's border.
The pro-Ukrainian hacktivists and those involved in military operations are providing financial assistance to the military and are involved in cyber warfare. These are not charities dedicated to fighting poverty or promoting social justice.
There are an estimated 100,000 to 130,000 Russian troops along the Ukrainian and Belarusian borders. The United States, a Ukraine ally, has deployed 3,000 troops to the region, with another 8,500 on high alert.
Over $200,000 in bitcoin donations were received by the organization Come Back Alive in the second half of 2021, marking a recent jump in funding. The company provides the Ukrainian army with sniper-rifle scopes, drones, and mobile surveillance systems.
Another group is the Ukrainian Cyber Alliance, which has conducted cyberattacks against Russian targets along with the Belarusian Cyber-Partisans, which received around $100,000 in crypto. The alliance spokesperson said last year that the group was obtaining information on Russian politicians and security figures, and passing it on to Ukraine's military.
Elliptic reported, "By embracing crypto-asset fundraising, Ukrainian volunteer groups are actually emulating techniques previously employed by Russia since the very start of the Russo-Ukrainian War."
Activists in Ukraine aren't the only ones looking toward Bitcoin. In the early days of the Russo-Ukraine conflict, pro-Russian separatists raised funds in bitcoins.
Bank wires or payment apps have been the most common method of receiving funds from private donors, but cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin have become more popular as they bypass banks that may deny payments to Ukraine.
Despite this, the majority of funding flowing into Ukraine comes from traditional payment systems, not cryptocurrency.
CBW - External Analyst