Blockchain analytics agency Chainalysis has printed a brand new report detailing the dynamics of darknet markets and fraud retailers after the previous big Hydra Market collapsed resulting from joint actions from authorities in Germany and the USA.
After the U.S. Division of Treasury Workplace of Overseas Belongings Management (OFAC) sanctioned Hydra in April and German companies ordered its closure, common every day income for all darkish internet markets fell from $4.2 million to $447,000.
Whole darknet market income for 2022 was $1.5 billion, a major decline from $3.1 billion in 2021. Different marketplaces most certainly channeled their efforts in the direction of attracting former Hydra distributors and customers, as most fraud retailers gained their preliminary market share after the platform’s collapse.
The Battle for Darknet Market Dominance
As per the report, three main darknet markets gained dominance within the wake of Hydra’s downfall. Whereas their revenues didn’t come near Hydra’s, Mega Darknet Market, Blacksprut Market, and OMG!OMG! Market recorded larger shares.
Notably, every of the three platforms dominated the market at completely different intervals. The primary was OMG, whose interval of dominance was instantly after Hydra’s demise.
Though OMG turned energetic in July 2020, its deposit volumes had been so low that it was extra of a private operation than a darknet market. Nonetheless, the platform recorded excessive inflows as quickly as Hydra went down, most of which got here from Hydra counterparties.
The inflows continued till June, when OMG suffered a distributed denial of service (DDoS) assault. The assault triggered distributors and customers emigrate to Blacksprut Market and Mega Darknet Market. Blacksprut additionally bought hacked in November, forcing customers to maneuver to Mega Market.
Nonetheless, OMG recorded extra inflows and actions than Blacksprut and Mega Markets all through 2022.
An Administrative Hyperlink?
Apparently, on-chain knowledge has proven that OMG’s central wallets use a gaggle of deposit addresses beforehand utilized by Hydra, which is owned by a high-risk change working primarily in Russia.
Blacksprut and Mega despatched funds to the identical group of addresses however not as a lot as OMG. This implies an administrative or vendor overlap between all 4 markets however primarily between Hydra and OMG.
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