According to a study published by blockchain analytics firm Elliptic, more than 13% of all crime proceeds are in bitcoinBTC) were laundered through privacy wallets in 2020, an increase of 2% from the 2019 figures.
13% of all proceeds from crime as leverage BTC Were washed through privacy wallets
Dr Tom Robinson, Elliptic’s co-founder and Chief Scientist, stated in the report titled ‘Financial Crime Typologies in Cryptoassets’ that so far in 2020 cryptocurrency has been laundered through privacy wallets representing more than $ 160 million in darknet bitcoin markets, thefts, and other types of scams.
Robinson highlights one of the most famous crypto-related incidents due to its mainstream nature: July Twitter hack, where hackers took control of more than 130 high profile accounts on the social media platform and whose bitcoin collected through the deployed scam campaign laundered via the Wasabi Wallet.
Another example cited in the report was the $ 280 million worth of cryptos stolen from the Asian stock exchange Kucoin in September, where Wasabi Wallet was again used to mix some of the stolen money, according to forensic analysis.
Report claims Privacy wallets are now the new money laundering tool for criminals
Criminals have moved from using mixers to privacy wallets in recent years, said Dr. Robinson. A mixer is a service that allows users to deposit money BTC and then pull several bitcoin out of the pol, breaking the blockchain trail.
There have been some instances where mixer suppliers were fined with multimillion-dollar fines for violating anti-money laundering regulations, such as Helix. Dr. Robinson gave his opinion on the privacy wallets:
Privacy wallets help their users achieve just that – privacy. There are perfectly legitimate reasons for using mixers or privacy wallets, and financial privacy is a foundation of any open society. However, the blockchain data shows that criminals have been rapidly abusing this new tool and that this poses an increasing challenge for regulators, law enforcement and compliance professionals looking to fight financial crime in crypto assets.
On December 3, 2020, news.Bitcoin.com reported about a study by Chainalysis, which found that darknet marketplaces so far surpassed the $ 800 million threshold in cryptocurrencies in 2019 earnings so far this year, its all-time high. The most commonly used cryptocurrencies in the transactions are BTC, bitcoin cash (BCH), litecoin (LTC), and necklace (USDT).
What do you think of the report on privacy wallets? Let us know in the comments below.
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