With the rates of cyber-attacks and cybercrime on the rise, security professionals have intensified their research to find out what tools hackers rely on for theft and disguise.
Cybersecurity experts have come across a new dark web tool that provides criminals with a way to check if their cryptocurrency holdings are linked to known criminal activity.
The tool is called Antinalysis and it helps cybercriminals avoid the risk of being identified when they try to cash out their illegal proceeds, according to the blog of blockchain analytics company Elliptic.
The tool allegedly allows users of the dark web to see if funds are likely to be flagged as proceeds of crime through cryptocurrency exchanges.
According to Coindesk, regulated cryptocurrency exchanges use analytics tools provided by companies like Elliptic to check customer deposit links to illegal activity by analyzing whether they originate from a wallet with those links.
According to TechRadar, after the tool was revealed, the BBC noted that despite the belief that cryptocurrencies were anonymous, law enforcement agencies from around the world made arrests by tracking the tainted cryptocurrency through the public blockchain.
Dr. Tom Robinson, chief scientist and founder of the analytics company Elliptic, who discovered the site said, we see criminals starting to resist blockchain analytics, and this service is a first.
Nick Backes, a crypto-tracking expert, said he believes Antinalysis is just a copy of AMLBot, which was described as an anti-money laundering intelligence service that first appeared online in 2019.
According to reports, money laundering through the use of cryptocurrencies has become a major problem for governments around the world.
However, according to Dr. Robinson, Antinalysis, which charges $3 to verify a single Bitcoin address, is not doing well at the moment.
He noted that this is not surprising given that providing accurate blockchain analytics requires a significant investment in technology and data collection over long periods of time.
Regardless, the tool represents an important new capability for crypto launderers, concluded Dr. Robinson who said that they can now test their own money laundering methods.