Every innovation has some disadvantages. The internet might have connected us in more ways expected, but it also enabled opportunists to use this interconnectedness as a means to take part in illegal activities.
That’s what’s happening in the Dark Web, a part of the internet which requires specialized software to be accessed. People who are accessing websites on the dark web remain anonymous and untraceable, making it the preferred medium for criminals and terrorists who want to use the internet for illegal means.
With the growing popularity of the dark web comes cryptocurrencies, the disruptor in the tech and financial world. Criminals seem to rejoice in the coming of these two innovations as they make it easier for them to commit crimes, undetected.
Reports have it that digital coins are widely used in the dark web as a form of payment for illegal purchases such as firearms, ammunition, drugs and criminal services. A recently conducted research paper stated that Litecoin is now slowly dominating the dark web and is expected to overtake Bitcoin as the preferred crypto of use on the platform.
Millions of people tried their luck with Bitcoin since it took the world by storm last year and reached a whopping $20,000. These people include investors, speculators, and users. This resulted in a rapid increase in payment fees. Using Bitcoins to make payments became less practical due to these increased fees and slower transaction times.
Bitcoin is currently the number one cryptocurrency used in the dark web. However, Litecoin emerged as the second most preferred coin, and one that is gaining fast on Bitcoin. Litecoin transactions are completed more quickly, which seems to appeal to users of the Dark Web. Litecoin was released in 2011, two years after Bitcoin was launched. It is a fork of the Bitcoin chain.
In addition, Monero and Dash are two other cryptocurrencies that are also popular in the dark web. The preference of which digital coin to use in the dark web varies depending on the location of the user.
Recent research found out that criminals in Eastern Europe use altcoins more than the English-speaking criminals in Western Europe and the U.S. It was also found that Russians are the top Litecoin users in the dark web, while the British and the Americans choose Monero.