The US Government Is Powerless to Block Bitcoin Addresses

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It has been widely reported this week that the U.S. government has blacklisted two BTC addresses linked to cyber crime. These particular addresses were singled out because their owners are believed to be Iranians, whose country is currently facing heavy economic sanctions from the U.S. While the BTC addresses are clearly connected to ransomware, mainstream media has gotten one crucial element of the story wrong: You can't blacklist a bitcoin address.

Bitcoin: Unblockable Since 2009

The Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) is the financial intelligence wing of the U.S. Treasury Department. It enforces economic sanctions against foreign entities the American government has taken exception to. Right now, it has Iran in its sights. By OFAC's own admission, however, trying to blacklist bitcoin addresses is a first. "While OFAC routinely provides identifiers for designated persons, today's action marks the first time OFAC is publicly attributing digital currency
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