The blockchain surveillance firm Ciphertrace claims to have created the “world’s first” monero tracing tools for law enforcement. According to the company announcement, Ciphertrace developed forensic tools for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) in order to track illicit monero transactions. Despite the firm’s claims, there is zero evidence provided that prove the company actually has such tools.
Since the open-source cryptocurrency was first invoked in 2014, the Monero (XMR) project has been heralded for privacy-centric techniques. The digital asset network uses enforced privacy for all transactions by leveraging concepts like ring signatures, bulletproofs, and stealth (one-time) addresses.
Due to the privacy-centric enhancements, the digital currency XMR has gained notoriety on darknet markets (DNM), as monero represents a great share of DNM transactions.
However, Ciphertrace, a blockchain intelligence firm that works with global law enforcement and regulators, claims it has a tool that can “trace and visualize Monero transaction flows.”
“Ciphertrace developed tools to explore monero transactions to assist in investigations,” the firm detailed in a press release on August 31. “These tools include transaction search, exploration, and visualization tools for Monero transaction flows that have been integrated with CipherTrace’s Inspector financial investigations product. This provides ways to track stolen Monero currencies or Monero currencies used in illegal transactions.”
Ciphertrace notes that monero is represented on 45% of all DNMs and calls it the “second-favorite cryptocurrency of choice among criminals.” Dave Jevans, CEO of Ciphertrace says that while people think it is nearly impossible to identify true sources, the company has been working for a year studying the Monero network.
Jevans reveals the company has created tools for law enforcement to help uncover illegal monero transactions but there’s still a lot of work…