An Estimated $1.36 billion of Crypto Assets Stolen This Year - CipherTrace

Zain  |  Jun 5, 2020

Approximately $1.36 billion worth of crypto assets have been stolen from January to May 2020, according to findings from CipherTrace.

In the report, it estimates the crypto-related crimes and money laundering in the first five months of 2020. The firm believer a chunk of it shares a deep related with COVID-19, many crimes have been committed in the name of the pandemic. The report is titled “Spring 2020 Cryptocurrency Crime and Anti-Money Laundering Report. Frauds and misappropriation make up for almost $1.3 billion of the crypto frauds.

Amid pandemic, crypto crime surges in first 5 months: CipherTrace - VASPs get cleaner - 75% of exchange payment cross borders - Bitcoin ATM users prefer high risk exchanges https://t.co/BAC6lEa85r #bitcoin #ETH #AML #travelrule

Previous Reports Also Back CipherTrace Claims 

Financial crimes enforcement network shared similar statistics previously and fired a warning to the citizen of the United States to be careful especially when it comes to crowd raising schemes for corona. Even fake PPE kits are in the mix.

Fake Covid-19 PPE Products Don’t Sell On Dark Net Markets https://t.co/DwaSah5KDO Cryptocurrencies, to be sure, are cleaner than the reputation which precedes them. less than 0.2% of the funds accepted by exchanges is directly from criminal sources #darkmarket #bitcoin #AML

However, it seems the direct approach of sending criminal funds to exchanges has taken a backseat as it dropped by almost 47% from the previous year. While the funds being generated now are sky-high, this suggests that the new anti-money regulations have made the reminder change their approach.  The crypto exchanges have updated their AML regulations and these statistics suggests they are working and has forced the criminals to find a new way.

According to CipherTrace reports, it appears that the new go-to option is the bitcoin ATMs which are especially handy to send money overseas. The criminals have a vast knowledge of the crypto framework in many countries. They look to target the ones where the AML regulations are still not stern and they can bypass them easily.  A recent report suggests that Finnish exchanges followed by Russian are still the preferred choice to do crypto frauds and money laundering via exchanges. As corona chaos appears in no mood to slow down, crypto crimes might surge through the year.

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