A new report from cyber-security company CipherTrace was released this week, and its findings suggest that the first nine months of 2018 saw a dramatic rise in thefts involving cryptocurrency. The report found that $927 million in cryptocurrency was stolen from digital currency exchanges and other platforms between January and September, according to Reuters.
That number is a notable increase from 2017’s totals. CipherTrace says that last year’s total thefts from cryptocurrency exchanges amounted to about $266 million. The increase has largely been attributed to the influx of new cryptocurrencies in the marketplace, the industry’s increased visibility, and the slow pace at which regulators have attempted to bring order to the space. CipherTrace CEO Dave Jevans told Reuters:
“The regulators are still a couple of years behind because there are only a few countries that have really applied strong anti-money laundering laws.”
Jevans acknowledged that the report does not include every crypto theft and suggested that the actual number of criminal transactions is likely much higher than the data indicates:
He said there are likely 50 percent more criminal transactions than those that were traced for this report. For instance, CipherTrace is aware of more than $60 million in cryptocurrency that was stolen but not reported.