Take a means of exchange that (usually) cannot be traced, and combine it with a platform allowing for anonymous and also untraceable transactions, and you’d probably expect there to be a good deal of money laundering of criminal proceeds therewith and thereon. And do you know what? There sure is, and the sort of people who might like to launder money are catching onto that intoxicating cocktail fast.
DeFi protocols—an umbrella term for financial services offered on public blockchains—received $900 million from illicit addresses in 2021, a 1,964% increase in value from 2020, according to the report.
DeFi was notably popular for laundering stolen funds, particularly through hacking, compared with funds from other types of crimes such as scams and ransomware, Chainalysis found. Its report noted that addresses associated with theft sent just under half of their stolen funds to DeFi platforms, or more than $750 million worth of cryptocurrency.
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