Yaya Fanusie

Yaya Fanusie

Chief Strategist, Cryptocurrency AML Strategies; Adjunct Senior Fellow, Center for a New American Security

Yaya J. Fanusie is an Adjunct Senior Fellow at the Center for a New American Security (CNAS) and an Adjunct Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD). His research focuses on the national security implications of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology. Fanusie spent seven years as both an economic and counterterrorism analyst in the CIA, where he regularly briefed federal law enforcement, U.S. military personnel and White House-level policy makers—including President George W. Bush whom he personally briefed on terrorism threats.

After leaving government service, Fanusie worked for a small consulting firm focused on financial asset recovery cases involving global corruption. Later, as director of analysis at FDD’s Center on Sanctions and Illicit Finance, Fanusie led research work on sanctions evasion, terrorist financing and Bitcoin money laundering. Fanusie has testified before Congress multiple times on illicit financing issues. He has appeared on CNN, Fox News, and has been quoted in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post. Fanusie blogs at Forbes and is a frequent public speaker on topics involving cryptocurrencies and U.S. national security.

Fanusie also is founder of Cryptocurrency AML Strategies, an advisory firm that helps financial institutions and technology companies address money laundering and terrorist financing risks associated with digital assets. In 2018, he developed and taught an Introduction to Blockchain Technology course at Morgan State University in Baltimore. He also is certified with the Association of Certified Financial Crime Specialists.

Yaya received an MA in International Affairs from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs and a BA in Economics from UC Berkeley.