Bitcoin initially became popular as a way to pay for illegal goods on the dark web marketplace the Silk Road. But just recently as cryptocurrencies enter the mainstream media once again, the current most active marketplace on the darknet has ditched Bitcoin in favor of Monero.
Here’s why Bitcoin’s use as a dark web currency is diminishing, and why Monero could see a surge in adoption as the one cryptocurrency the government can’t infiltrate.
Without The Dark Web, The Bitcoin We Know Today Might Not Be
Bitcoin price is now trading at nearly $40,000 per coin. The still-young cryptocurrency network might not have made it this far, if not for the Silk Road dark web marketplace created by Ross Ulbritch.
Back when no one knows what to pay for Bitcoin or had begun widely using it as a currency, it got an early jump start as a means to pay for illegal goods such as drugs, firearms, or explosives.
Bitcoin got a head start as a currency thanks to the Silk Road dark web marketplace | Source: BTCUSD on TradingView.com
Eventually, the Silk Road was taken down, and Bitcoin lived on. Its role as a currency for the dark web has remained, however, until now.
Related Reading | Alleged Silk Road Drug Dealer Arrested For Using Bitcoin For Money Laundering
According to Twitter chatter, the dark web’s most active marketplace, dubbed the White House Market, has given up on Bitcoin for good, and now only accepts the privacy coin Monero. But why?
For the first time on the darknet, the most active market does not accept Bitcoin. White House Market uses Monero, a cryptocurrency designed to safeguard the privacy of its previous owners, like cash.
— dark.fail (@DarkDotFail) January 14, 2021
Why Dark Net Marketplaces Prefer Monero Over Other Cryptocurrencies
As Bitcoin takes center stage in the world of finance and its value increases, the value it offers the dark web in terms of privacy is shrinking by the day.
Bitcoin is now an asset that institutions control, and its market cap is approaching $1 trillion. It has the attention of government regulators, and due to its design and popularity, blockchain analytics firms now can trace BTC transactions back to the source with enough accuracy, government agencies have begun tapping them to fight back against crime hidden away behind crypto.
Related Reading | Bitcoin Dark Web Transacted Value Spikes By Over 65% in 2020
Criminals can no longer hide behind what little privacy the top cryptocurrency can provide, despite its usage on the dark web growing year over year in 2020. Instead, the only choice is to look toward privacy coins that obfuscate sender and recipient data.
Will Monero begin to grow now that it is the primary cryptocurrency accepted on the White House Market? | Source: XMRUSD on TradingView.com
Monero is the undisputed king of privacy coins, offering the very best layer of protection over transactional details, which is why the White House Market has selected it as its currency of choice.
Government agencies have become increasingly successful in taking down dark web markets, and it could be due to their increased understanding of the Bitcoin blockchain. Will Monero be enough to keep Bitcoin’s spotlight and the government’s search lights away from the dark web?