Bitcoin’s use in Darknet marketplaces is reportedly growing, as a recent report shows that their users are on pace to spend $1 billion worth of the flagship cryptocurrency on them this year, despite crackdowns on top marketplaces over the last few years.
According to research conducted by blockchain analytics firm Chainalysis, reported on by Bloomberg, Darknet markets are going to seemingly break a new record this year, as the firm noted about $515 million worth of bitcoin were spent so far this year on Darknet marketplaces.
Bitcoin’s use on these marketplaces reportedly peaked in 2017, a year in which $872 million worth of BTC were spent on these. Last year, the figure dropped, along with bitcoin’s price which went from a near $20,000 all-time high to a $3,200 low before recovering. The total number of transactions conducted last year, however, doubled.
Notably, authorities have been cracking down on these marketplaces. In 2017, an international operation saw authorities take down two popular marketplaces: AlphaBay and Hansa, which were leading at the time, through Operation Bayonet.