Weekly Crypto Round Up: Latest News on Cryptocurrencies & the Dark Web | Week 36 – 2018

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Bitcoin and currency on a dark background.
The latest news on the intersection of the dark web and the world of cryptocurrencies.

At the beginning of this week, September was looking promising for major cryptocurrencies—the month started off with all of the digital coins in the green, supported by a stable growth.

However, this didn’t last long. On Wednesday, in less than an hour, the total market capitalization lost $12 billion, as crypto markets experienced a sharp decline.

Almost every top coin moved from a stable green into a red zone.

Following the slump, Bitcoin’s price went down 5 percent over the night, which caused the coin to drop beneath $7,000.

Over the next day, Bitcoin dipped even below, falling under the $6,500 value point. Currently, the coin is barely holding monthly gains.

Ethereum, the second largest cryptocurrency by market cap, also suffered losses and the price has descended deep below the preferred $300 price point.

Your TOR usage is being watched

Ran NeuNer, CNBC Crypto Trader host, addressed the issue on his Twitter multiple times. In one of his tweets, NeuNer wrote that the recent “movement” from a previously inactive Silk Road crypto wallet, could be a potential cause for the drop.

Silk Road Wallet Activates Again

Approximately $1 billion worth of Bitcoin has been moved from a cold wallet believed to be tied to the former darknet market Silk Road, shows recent transaction data.

After more than four years of inactivity, the owner of this wallet has actively been moving funds.

The movement was noticed by the Reddit user “sick_silk,” who in a series of posts over the week, kept investigating the transactions and posting updates.

Businessman in bitcoin labyrinth.
At the beginning of this week, September was looking promising for major cryptocurrencies—the month started off with all of the digital coins in the green, supported by a stable growth.

According to the Reddit user, the transactions are divided into chunks of 100 Bitcoin.

“Sick_silk” believes that this would lead to a dump in the markets, which would result in huge price fluctuations.

Silk Road was a famous darknet market, shut down in 2013 by the U.S.

Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). The platform was recognized as the first modern darknet market and was used mostly for drug and weapon purchases and other illicit activities.

The owner of Silk Road, Ross Ulbricht, was arrested in October 2013 and later sentenced to life in prison two years later in 2015.

Crypto ATM Market to Skyrocket in Next Five Years

A new report conducted by Research and Markets shows that the crypto ATM market will significantly grow in the next five years.

The market is expected to reach $144.5 million by 2023, from the current $16.3 million value.

Currently, crypto ATMs are mostly located in the U.S., and Research and Markets predicts that North America will maintain this leading position in the future as well.

As these machines rise in popularity, so does the demand for malware which enables hackers to get a hold of your crypto wallet through this type of ATM.

In early August, Japanese cybersecurity company Trend Micro discovered a dark web listing which has been selling crypto ATM malware.

The malware was being offered for $25,000, with a ready-to-use card equipped with EMV and NFC capabilities and a multilingual guide included in the price.

According to current statistics, over 3,500 crypto ATMs are being used right now, and this number is going to increase significantly.

The report also shows that there is a growing interest for a two-way ATM device, which would allow users to both buy and sell cryptocurrencies.

A study conducted by the Thailand Institute of Justice (TIJ), shows that crypto-related crimes in this country are on the rise, and will continue to do so in the upcoming months.

Thai authorities are faced with a real challenge, as the country is far from equipped to deal with such a crime wave, according to reporting from Bangkok Post.

Magnifying Thailand on map.
A study conducted by the Thailand Institute of Justice (TIJ), shows that crypto-related crimes in this country are on the rise, and will continue to do so in the upcoming months.

The Thailand Institute of Justice together with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime held a seminar “Advancing the Economy and Combating Crime in the Digital Age: Cryptocurrency and Crime” at the end of August in which these matters were discussed.

During the meeting, Kittipong Kittayarak, the executive director of the TIJ, explained that many criminal activities are made possible through cryptocurrencies due to their anonymous nature.

According to Kittayarak, criminal gangs use these digital assets to provide financial support for terrorists.

Cryptocurrencies also have a long history that connects them to child abuse, illicit drugs and firearm purchases on the dark web, he added.

This is seen as another indicator of the possible threats these digital assets pose for the society, particularly those who have emphasized privacy features, such as Zcash or Monero.

U.S. law enforcement agencies have been looking for ways to address these threats for a long time now.

The U.S. Secret Service in mid-June requested assistance from Congress to find a way to minimize the use of these privacy coins.

It’s common practice for different agencies to operate together in the fight against virtual currencies being used for illicit purposes, particularly on the dark web.

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That’s it for our summary of this week’s major crypto news headlines. This is the 10th post in our new crypto news series. See previous installments here:

Week 27

Week 28

Week 29

Week 30

Week 31

Week 32

Week 33

Week 34

Week 35

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