Iran Considers Telegram Open Network’s TON Cryptocurrency a Threat to its National Security
The government of Iran has considered Telegram’s virtual currency a threat to its national security. This is not the first time that Teheran targets individuals using the Telegram messaging platform.
According to Iranian authorities, any decision taken by Telegram to issue a national cryptocurrency would be considered a threat to the national security of the country. The information was released in a statement by Javad Javidnia, secretary of the country’s Criminal Content Definition Task Force.
The local newspaper Tehran Times informed about this issue:
“One of the most important factors in banning Telegram was the sense of a serious economic threat from its activities, which was unfortunately marginalized and neglected due to the fuss in the political atmosphere of the country.”
Since the end of the last year, that Telegram has been working on the so-called Telegram Open Network, also known as TON. The main intention behind this decision was to provide users with an innovative and fourth-generation digital currency. Indeed, TON aims at making Gram (the name of its virtual currency) the world’s most adopted crypto.
Earlier this year, the company planned an ICO for the Gram token but the company was able to gather $1.7 billion before than expected. This led to the cancellation of the ICO. Telegram had to give back the funds to investors.
Telegram has around 200 million monthly active users located all over the world. The application has been used by cryptocurrency enthusiasts in many different countries. In the past, Russia and China blocked the application from their territories.
Back in April 2018, Iran has also banned Telegram with the intention to protect their national security. Apparently, the government believes that the rallies against it have been planned using the popular messaging app.
According to some reports, Iran has also been working in order to create its own virtual currency and launch it to the market. The main intention behind this decision is to avoid sanctions imposed by the United States and other countries around the world. Using a national virtual currency, transactions can be processed without having to use the US dollar or another international currency.
Venezuela has also created its own digital asset trying to avoid international sanctions. However, the results have been limited.