Samourai Wallet’s Whirlpool (the non-custodial Bitcoin mixer), volume increased thrice last month, with the service processing more than $10 million worth of Bitcoin.
It has been reported that according to data published to Twitter by Whirlpoolstats’ Matt Odell, the March activity comprised 40% of the then-total volume produced by Whirlpool since its launch in May 2019.
However, Whirlpool has seen a notable increase in user activity during 2020 so far.
Whirlpool Saw Retraction In User Activity
While Whirlpool saw a retraction in user activity at the end of 2019 after posting a record of 303.55 BTC in volume during October, each month of Q1 2020 set consecutive records for the number of Bitcoin’s mixed on the platform.
Likewise, in January 2020, a new record of 356.65 BTC was set, followed by 529.05 BTC in trade during February, and 1,523.45 BTC in March.
It has been analyzed that April appears on-course to set yet another record for the service, with 1,020.80 BTC or 67% of March’s total having been mixed just 11 days into the month.
Whirlpool Claimed Comprising First Bitcoin Mixing Service
At the time of launch, Whirlpool claimed to comprise the first mobile-first Bitcoin mixing service.
However, the service uses CoinJoin to shuffle UTXO’s and mitigate any deterministic links between them.
According to Samourai, each mixing cycle can be interpreted 1,496 different ways, with further cycles increasing interpretations exponentially.
It has also been analyzed that user funds are grouped into pools of 0.01 BTC, 0.05 BTC, and 0.5 BTC when mixed. The 0.05 BTC and the 0.5 BTC pools have generally oscillated between comprising the largest pool by monthly volume.
Whirlpool Volume Comes From Governments Complying With FATF
The increase in Whirlpool volume comes amid tightening regulations from governments seeking to comply with Financial Action Task Force (FATF) recommendations and enhanced anti-money laundering requirements (AML) on regulated centralized exchanges.
Similarly, in December 2019, Binance Singapore reportedly froze a customer’s funds amid an investigation into a transaction that had been mixed using Wasabi wallet’s CoinJoin service.
Thus, a Binance representative said that its Singaporean exchange “does not tolerate any transactions directly and indirectly associated with gambling, P2P, and especially darknet/mixer sites.”