Frequently Asked Questions
1095. Who is the Tornado Cash “person” that OFAC designated pursuant to E.O. 13722 (“Blocking Property of the Government of North Korea and the Workers’ Party of Korea, and Prohibiting Certain Transactions with Respect to North Korea”) and Executive Order (E.O.) 13694 (“Blocking the Property of Certain Persons Engaging in Significant Malicious Cyber-Enabled Activities”), as amended?
A “person” subject to designation under E.O. 13722 or E.O. 13694, as amended, includes an individual or an entity, defined as “a partnership, association, trust, joint venture, corporation, group, subgroup, or other organization.” Once OFAC has determined that a person is subject to sanctions, OFAC adds that person to the Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons List.
OFAC designated the entity known as Tornado Cash, which is a “partnership, association, joint venture, corporation, group, subgroup, or other organization” that may be designated pursuant to IEEPA. Tornado Cash’s organizational structure consists of: (1) its founders and other associated developers, who together launched the Tornado Cash mixing service, developed new Tornado Cash mixing service features, created the Tornado Cash Decentralized Autonomous Organization (DAO), and actively promoted the platform’s popularity in an attempt to increase its user base; and (2) the Tornado Cash DAO, which is responsible for voting on and implementing new features created by the developers. Tornado Cash uses computer code known as “smart contracts” to implement its governance structure, provide mixing services, offer financial incentives for users, increase its user base, and facilitate the financial gain of its users and developers. OFAC has not designated Tornado Cash’s individual founders, developers, members of the DAO, or users, or other persons involved in supporting Tornado Cash at this time. However, all Tornado Cash property and interests in property are blocked, and U.S. persons cannot transact with Tornado Cash or deal in its property and interests in property, absent authorization from OFAC. See FAQs 1077 and 1078.