Russian crypto traders have been considering getting unlimited accounts for global exchanges because of limited access to such platforms. Over the past year, the offering of such accounts on the dark web has increased significantly, cybersecurity experts told the Russian press.
Supply of crypto exchange accounts for Russian users doubles in year of sanctions
More and more ready-to-use accounts for cryptocurrency exchanges are being sold to Russian residents. While this is not a new phenomenon, such accounts are often employed by fraudsters and money launderers. The current increase in supply has been attributed to restrictions imposed by trading platforms on customers from Russia as a result of compliance with sanctions related to the war in Ukraine.
Russian residents are buying these accounts despite the dangers, such as the fact that the person who created the account can maintain access after the sale, according to Kommersant. But they are inexpensive, and offers on the darknet market have doubled since early 2022, Nikolay Chursin of the information security threat analysis group Positive Technologies told Business Daily.
The number of new ads for ready-made, verified wallets on various exchanges reached 400 in December, according to Peter Mareichev, an analyst with Kaspersky Digital Footprint Intelligence. Proposals to prepare fake documents to pass the know-your-customer procedure also increased, the paper revealed in an earlier article last month.
Simple login data, a username and password, is usually sold for around $50, Chursin added. And for a fully set-up account, including registered documents, buyers must pay an average of $300. Dmitry Bogachev of digital threat analysis firm Jet Infosystems explained that the price depends on factors such as country of registration, date, and activity history. Older accounts are more expensive.
Sergey Mendeleev, CEO of the defi banking platform Indefibank, points out that there are two categories of buyers–Russians who need accounts for daily business and have no other choice, and those who use these accounts for criminal purposes who use these accounts for criminal purposes. Igor Sergienko, director of development at cybersecurity services provider RTK-Solar, is convinced that the main reason for the demand is that in recent months crypto exchanges have blocked withdrawals to Russian accounts and Russian bank cards.
Leading crypto service providers, including major digital asset exchanges, are complying with financial restrictions introduced by the West in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Last year, Binance, the world’s largest crypto trading platform, indicated that while it restricted sanctioned individuals and entities, it did not ban all Russians.
However, after the end of 2022, many Russian users of Binance