Petya Ransomware Funds Travel Through the Tumbling Process

The Petya ransomware was mad as the mainstream media portrayed it to be, and the founders only made off with $8,000 in extortion funds. One of the reasons was a result of their email. What is interesting about the Petya ransomware is the hackers chose to use one address that is particular to collect funds to addresses utilised in these types of protocols. After a couple of days, the hackers began moving the money to various addresses. Individuals following the funds believe the money was sent through a stage that mixes bitcoins to be able to obfuscate the sending procedure or a tumbler id=”attachment_52188″ class=”wp-caption aligncenter”>A depiction of a Coinjoin combination or tumbling process and best bitcoin casino 2015.

‘A Vast Majority of Transfers had More Than Ten Total Transactions’

According to the publication Quartz those bitcoins will be extremely tough for law enforcement to locate. The information outlet says they followed the money as far as they could, but the bitcoins were shipped via a series of transfers and among them was a bitcoin exchange that is valid. After the first few hops, the publication details funds were sent to a”high volume speech” which they assumed was the trading platform.

They could only speculate on which transactions belonged to Petya after this stage Quartz explains.

“We collected each spent output with that speech, then every spent output from those addresses, and so on,” explains Quartz columnist Keith Collins. “In order to restrict the number of rabbit holes that the crawler followed, we just included transfers which occurred within eight hours of the first outgoing transaction from the initial wallet. We believed high-volume pockets to be wallets that had three or more total trades, as returned from the API, but the huge majority of those had more than ten total transactions.”

This picture depicts the Petya funds which were mixed through over 2000 addresses.

Taking Action Against Digital Currency Mixers

There are multiple ways for individuals and groups to mix their bitcoins to confuse blockchain surveillance. These include the many other mixing platforms found on the deep web and tumblers like Joinmarket. Further, because they consider these cryptocurrencies provide anonymity, some users elect to use altcoins like Zcash and Monero21 Best Bitcoin In the future, lots of people believe better kinds of anonymization will be coming like sorts of Zero Knowledge platforms and Schnorr signatures. However, government officials and law enforcement have been saying that anonymizers and bitcoin mixers should be illegal. As an example, the Basel Institute on Governance, Europol, Interpol, and U.S. officials have been talking about proposals to”take action against electronic currency mixers/tumblers.”

Can Law Enforcement Really Follow 2373 Hops?

Quartz details that the Petya funds were estimated to be sent to over 2373 addresses within the duration of the process. “If we knew what bitcoin address or addresses the Petya cash ended up in, we’d likely find thousands and thousands of transactions between that speech and the beginning address,” explains the information outlet. “That is more than we can ever graph.”

The news comes at a time when surveillance businesses have become a popular topic, and just Chainalysis claimed to know the Mt Gox bitcoins’ destination. Blockchain companies may be fabricating how well they can follow these transactions with hackers mixing their coins through a series of transfers.

What do you consider mixing transactions? Do you think all the outputs can be really followed by law enforcement when funds are routed through a bitcoin tumbler? Tell us in the comments below.

Pictures via Shutterstock, Quartz, and Pixabay. 

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