Cyber Criminals Are Now Hiding Their Stolen Cryptos 13x Faster, Says Report


A new report unveiled a growing trend of efforts from cybercriminals hiding their stolen cryptocurrencies through different transaction flows. Crystal Blockchain pointed out that since 2019, the volume of stolen bitcoin grew significantly.

Only 8% of the Funds Were Transferred to Exchanges With Verification Procedures in 2020

Per the findings, in 2020, the firm said that cybercriminals attempted to withdraw stolen and scam-sourced digital assets at a rate of 13x faster than five years ago.

Interestingly, in 53% of the cases, exchanges with verification requirements were the major destinations of such funds in 2015. But the figures fell in 2020 to 8% of stolen funds being transferred through crypto exchanges with verification procedures.

Still, mixers and exchanges without verification requirements were the main destinations in 2020 of the stolen crypto funds. Moreover, the report highlighted that crypto criminals only hide their stolen funds within 28 days on average.

Growing Popularity of Blockchain Analytics Tools

Crystal Blockchain provided some potential reasons behind that trend, including the emergence of several blockchain analytical firms working hand-by-hand with exchanges to improve their security compliance systems. The firm also added:

In the case of security breaches, for example, the combination of the speed at which information is spread amongst crypto-community members in 2020 as compared to 2015, as well as the improved ability to instantly tag addresses as high-risk by blockchain analytics platforms, now forces crypto-criminals to withdraw stolen assets in a much shorter period than they ever had to before.

Overall, the report praises that crypto regulations increasingly encouraging exchanges to take proper measures. It includes performing more robust anti-money laundering procedures. However, the blockchain analytics firm warned:

As the number of VASPs using analytics tools increases, the fight against theft and other illicit activities continues to improve. This does mean, however, that the schemes used by crypto-criminal to withdraw stolen funds will become even more complex and concealed, and they will definitely attempt to withdraw their assets in an even shorter time period than they ever have before.

What are your thoughts on the report’s findings? Let us know in the comments section below.

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