The Dutch Fiscal Information and Investigation Service (FIOD), in collaboration with Europol and enforcement agencies in Luxembourg, has successfully shut down one of the largest cryptocurrency mixing service provider, Bestmixer.io.
Cryptocurrency mixing websites also called “tumblers” pool large units of cryptocurrencies from their clients, usually criminals and jumble them with clean funds, making it nearly impossible to trace the source of the transaction.
According to a press release by Europol, the authorities started keeping tabs on Bestmixer.io since June 2018 and worked with the leading cybersecurity firm, McAfee, to execute an operation to shut down the crypto mixing shop.
Since its inception in May 2018, Europol said that Bestmixer had helped clients to hide proceeds gathered from criminal operations collected in top cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Litecoin and Bitcoin Cash. The records show that the service has mixed as much as 27,000 Bitcoins (appr. $200 million) in the past year.
Following the shutdown of the website, the Europol release confirmed the seizure of six servers in the Netherlands and Luxembourg. Additionally, the operation led to the gathering of sensitive information on all interactions on the platform in the past year including IP Addresses, Chat messages, Bitcoin Addresses, and transaction details.
In the coming months, the Dutch Fiscal Information and Investigation Service (FIOD) will collaborate with authorities in other EU nations to analyze this information with an eye likely on catching the masterminds of the crypto mixing service.
Meanwhile, the latest shutdown marks another successful effort by European authorities to bring to book, individuals who are misusing cryptocurrencies. In similar events, Stmarket.co reported the Europol seized six-figure worth of crypto from a raid on the dark web and also arrested a man alleged as responsible for $11 million IOTA token theft in 2018.