UNITED STATES, WASHINGTON (OBSERVATORY) — Cryptocurrency holders most often resort to the services of bitcoin mixers because of privacy considerations, and not in an attempt to hide illegal income. The share of stolen cryptocurrency in the total volume is small. This is evidenced by the results of a study of the analytical blockchain startup Chainalysis.
According to company statistics, only 8.1% of the coins in the mixers were stolen, and 2.7% were used to make transactions on the darknet. Another 1.9% of coins are transferred from gambling sites, which may be considered illegal depending on jurisdiction.
At the same time, users of darknet markets more often send cryptocurrency directly from exchange wallets. 40% of the coins go to bitcoin mixers from traditional exchanges, 7.7% from p2p platforms. More than a quarter of the coins mixed come from other mixers.
In addition, Chainalysis analysts found that centralized mixers accept more dubious coins than their decentralized counterparts. So, the centralized Bestmixer service, closed by law enforcement in May 2019, was used to mix more than 27,000 BTC of illegal origin ($ 200 million at that time).
For comparison, the Wasabi decentralized wallet for the first few months of this year was used to mix bitcoins worth about $ 10 million, and in August this value was $ 90 million. In total, from the beginning of the year, the Wasabi wallet was used to mix about $ 250 million.
According to analysts, not confirmed by specific figures, Bitcoin has become more actively used in the financing of terrorism. At the same time, the use of cryptocurrency for legitimate purposes is growing.
“The processing companies BitPay, Flexa, Coinpayments, WebMoney, Coinify and Square record a significant increase in payments in 2019, and the number of transactions increased by more than 50% compared to the beginning of the year,” Chainalysis said.
Earlier in August, Chainalysis introduced the Chainalysis KYT real-time alert system, which informs the user about suspicious transactions.
This article is written and prepared by our foreign editors writing for OBSERVATORY NEWS from different countries around the world – material edited and published by OBSERVATORY staff in our newsroom.
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