A small group of 270 addresses drive over 50% of money laundering activity in the crypto space, a blockchain-focused firm Chainalysis has learned. Moreover, a small group of 1,867 addresses received up to 75% of all cryptocurrencies sent from illicit addresses over the past year.
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Chainalysis estimates 270 addresses received $1.3 billion of illicit cryptocurrency over the past year, while a smaller group of 24 addresses received over $500 million worth of illicit cryptocurrency. The concentration of illicit cryptocurrencies in a small group of addresses has been growing steadily since 2020.
"Overall, what the data makes clear is that most illicit funds travel to service deposit addresses for whom money laundering makes up a huge portion of their activity, to the point that many of them appear to have no other purpose," the firm highlights.
However, cryptocurrency-related crimes dropped significantly in 2020. The firm says last year the criminal share of all criminal crypto activity fell to 0.34% ($10 billion), while in 2019 this rate was 2.1% (approximately $21.4 billion).
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