The crypto community in Iran is still riding a roller coaster as the country seeks to bring its economy forward. Even though the country has expressed its interest in digital assets, enthusiasts cannot be very optimistic yet.
According to recent statements by Nasser Hakimi, who serves as the deputy governor for new technologies at the Central Bank of Iran, crypto trading is illegal and banned by the government.
In an interview with the Iranian agency Tasnim News, Mr. Hakimi explained that the recent spike in the popularity of cryptocurrencies in Iran could be potentially dangerous for citizens because of their volatility – let alone the legal risks associated with their use. The expert also warned that victims risk losing the protection of the state if they fall for a fraud or scam:
"[Iranians should be cautious] against the advertisements and marketers of pyramid style network companies that promote Bitcoin like a tree with gold coins in the Adventures of Pinocchio ... The Supreme Council on Countering Money Laundering has prohibited the sale and purchase of Bitcoin in Iran."
In Iran, Bitcoin Is Legal —Or Not— Depending on Who You Ask
The current status of bitcoin and cryptocurrencies in Iran is quite complex to explain, mainly because of the difference in criteria shown on the statements given by different public authorities in the country.
As an example, Mr. Hakimi clarified that it is essential to make a distinction between trading and mining. This idea could imply that the supposed ban ordered by the Supreme Council on Countering Money Laundering of Iran does not affect mining; however, just a week ago, the country's authorities confiscated more than 1,000 ASICS located in different mining farms across Yazd province.