One of the largest coin mixers of the crypto market has been shut down by an operation led by the police of Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Europol. Bestmixer, known as one of the three main crypto tumblers in the market, was shut down today.
If you do not know that a crypto mixer or tumbler is, you should know that these are services that basically mix up the information so that people can use Bitcoin with more privacy. Basically, the idea is to make Bitcoin as anonymous as privacy coins like Monero.
Even though these services are not completely failproof, they are still considered pretty good and some criminals use them in order to cloak their transactions and be safer when using cryptos for illegal activities.
According to the reports from the police, the Dutch Fiscal Information and Investigation Service has seized the six servers of the company, which enabled the company to mix over $200 million USD in assets. The service could be used for BTC, Litecoin (LTC) and Bitcoin Cash (BCH) and it was considered one of the most important services in its line of work.
As expected, the police discovered that several of the coins that were mixed using Bestmixer came from criminal activity and were used for money laundering. Because of this, the authorities deemed the service as something that was widely being used for criminal activities.
Europol affirmed that this is the first time ever in which a cryptocurrency mixer service is disabled by the authorities. If you try to visit the site now, you will see a message in which it is affirmed that the service has been seized and that “you are not anonymous”.
The authorities have also collected data from the platform since the past year and tried to figure out more about the identity of the people using the mixers, taking their IPs, Bitcoin addresses and even chat messages. This information will be shared with other countries, too, as noted by Europol.
Several mixers can still be found online at the time of this report. The most famous ones are BitMix.biz, ChipMixer and BitBlender.