A recent partnership between information security firm Terbium Labs and a popular blockchain analytics startup known as Skry has revealed that Dream Market is now the most popular bitcoin-based darknet market.
Terbium Labs, which is also the creator of the revolutionary Matchlight data intelligence system, partnered with Skry and together, they analyzed millions of URLs to determine which among three of the biggest darknet markets at the moment is the most popular.
Dream Market came out on top as the one with the most hits when it was placed side by side with heavyweights such as the AlphaBay Market and The Majestic Garden.
Case Study to be Used as a Countermeasure
The two firms plan to use the results of the study as a countermeasure against some of the proposed bitcoin upgrades, specifically those that will improve user privacy on the blockchain.
Some of the anticipated upgrades expected from bitcoin include Voldemort’s MimbleWimble and CoinJoin, both of which promise to enhance the privacy of bitcoin users on public blockchain transactions.
The collaboration between Terbium Labs and Skry seeks to prove more than just the popularity of Dream Market.
In addition to providing useful insight to the law enforcement in the tracking of criminal activities on dark web marketplaces, the two firms will also supply this information to financial institutions and bitcoin-based companies.
They will also be monitoring the most used products on these blockchains and other bitcoin ledgers.
Matchlight Used to Scan Millions of Public Keys
Formerly known as Coinalytics, Skry employed the use of Terbium Labs’ Matchlight to index 3.7 million public keys that were obtained from password-protected forums, Tor hidden services, darknet markets such as Dream Market, and paste sites, among others.
Out of 11,000 URLs from the dark web, 22,000 public keys were obtained. 798 of these were unique bitcoin public keys.
The URLs were then taken through Skry’s analytic platform where they were further processed and aggregated to provide more accurate associative information.
Dream Market took the lead with 353 public keys and was followed closely by AlphaBay Market, which had 298 public keys.
The Majestic Garden, the third most popular bitcoin-powered darknet market, had 75 public keys.
Bitcoin Still On Top
Despite the notably increased efforts to keep bitcoin tracking at a manageable level for entities such as law enforcement, the digital currency still stands out as the most used type of currency on dark web platforms.
Two Department of War Studies professors from King’s College in London published a report that backed the fact bitcoin is still the preferred digital currency for conducting a variety of transactions on popular darknet markets such as AlphaBay and the Dream Market.
The report, “Cryptopolitik and the Darknet” elucidated how bitcoin formed the backbone of the dark trade since it is the only common currency used in Tor hidden service trades.
Other cryptocurrencies such as Monero have seen a notable rise in usage, especially after their integration with the AlphaBay Market. Monero’s main appeal lies in its strong privacy users, something that bitcoin cannot measure up to as it is at the moment.
Nevertheless, the introduction of coin-mixing services, the most popularly known being CleanCoin, has significantly enhanced the privacy of users wishing to keep their online activities untraceable by offering bitcoin users the opportunity to exchange the digital currency with a number of sources, making it virtually impossible to track the origin of the transaction.
Combined with the fact that bitcoin is easier to convert into multiple currencies and back, it is more likely to remain the preferred method of trade.
Dream Market Leader in Quality
The popularity of Dream Market comes as no surprise given the fact that it currently produces some of the best quality products and has the most reputable vendors on the dark web.
Other than the fact that tightly-run ship also includes a 4% commission on every sale, there is little else that the site can be faulted for.