According to the latest report released by blockchain sleuth CipherTrace, Finnish and Russian crypto exchanges received the highest percentage of crime-related Bitcoin funds last year.
CipherTrace’s “Spring 2020 Crime and Anti-Money Laundering” report revealed that Finnish exchanges received 12.01% of all ill-gotten cryptocurrencies in 2019. The report further noted that Helsinki-based peer-to-peer crypto exchange, LocalBitcoins alone accounted for 99% of these funds. The P2P exchange has topped the CipherTrace list for the 3rd consecutive year.
Meanwhile, Russian crypto exchanges occupied the 2nd spot on CipherTrace’s list in 2019. According to the report, they received 5.23% of all their crypto directly from popular criminal sources such as dark markets, ransomware, hacks and other illegal activities.
U.K. exchanges occupied the 3rd spot with relatively lower percentage of received crime-related crypto. The report noted that exchanges in the country received 0.69% of such funds. Germany, Japan and U.S.-based crypto exchanges accounted for less than 0.10% of received ill-gotten funds.
Notably, the report also revealed that the proportion of illicit funds directly received by crypto exchanges halved from 2018 to 2019. It noted that only 0.17% of funds received by crypto exchanges last year came directly from criminal sources. The report claims this trend marks a 3-year low for crypto exchanges around the world. This success could mainly be due to the recent crypto Anti-Money Laundering regulations being implemented around the world.
CipherTrace also noted somewhere in the report that 2020 is on track to be the most prolific year for crypto criminals. According to the report, $1.4 billion worth of crypto has already been stolen within the first 5 months of the year. 98% of these crime-related funds come from Ponzi schemes and other frauds. CipherTrace said the largest contributor to this high number is the PlusToken-linked Chinese scam, Wotoken.