Tracers in the Dark

The Global Hunt for the Crime Lords of Cryptocurrency

English language

Published Nov. 17, 2022 by Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group.


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5 stars (2 reviews)

Over the last decade, a single innovation has massively fueled digital black markets: cryptocurrency. Crime lords inhabiting lawless corners of the internet have operated more freely—whether in drug dealing, money laundering, or human trafficking—than their analog counterparts could have ever dreamed of. By transacting not in dollars or pounds but in currencies with anonymous ledgers, overseen by no government, beholden to no bankers, these black marketeers have sought to rob law enforcement of their chief method of cracking down on illicit finance: following the money.

But what if the centerpiece of this dark economy held a secret, fatal flaw? What if their currency wasn’t so cryptic after all? An investigator using the right mixture of technical wizardry, financial forensics, and old-fashioned persistence could crack open an entire world of wrongdoing.

Tracers in the Dark is a story of crime and pursuit unlike any other. With unprecedented access to the major …

3 editions

Bitcoin isn’t private, how law enforcement took down marketplaces, and why that might be good/bad

5 stars

Excellent non-fiction and elegantly crafted dive into cryptocurrency tracing and the law enforcement actions that came out of them. After the four stories are told, the last chapters are a nuanced exploration of the light and dark sides of making every financial transaction traceable or untraceable.

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4 stars


  • Sociology