Terrorist financing is the process by which terrorists fund their operations in order to perform terrorist acts. Terrorists need financial support to carry out their activities and to achieve their goals. While different from money laundering, terrorists often exploit similar weaknesses in the financial system. It can be very difficult to distinguish between the activities of terrorists from other criminals in their abuse of the financial system. Terrorist financing uses funds for an illegal political purpose, but the money is not necessarily derived from illicit proceeds.