Someones always watching. Whether its the ever increasingly prying eyes of the government, an exchange trying to sell your data to the highest bidder or criminals the Bitcoin blockchain is open for everyone to see. Everyone has a basic human right to privacy, so it’s understandable that you’d like to keep your finances private too, luckily a Bitcoin Mixer can help you do just that!
However Bitcoin Mixers aren’t the silver bullet a lot of people think they are and come with a number of trade offs, if they work at all. Not knowing how to use them properly can result in your funds getting caught up with illegal money laundering or worse, stolen or seized by the government.
What Is A Bitcoin Mixer?
Bitcoin mixers, also commonly called Bitcoin tumblers or Bitcoin blenders, are software or services that allows users to have their bitcoin mixed together with tens or even hundreds of other Bitcoin users in order to sever any ties to the funds original source.
Why Do People Use Crypto Mixers?
As the Bitcoin Blockchain is a public ledger, it means that it’s open and free for anyone to look at. Each transaction and address is just a big, essentially random, string of numbers and letters but it is possible to match up these with real world identities. This is why Bitcoin is said to be pseudonymous not anonymous.
Matching up identities to addresses and following the trail of bitcoins is what Chain Analysis firms speacialise in and there’s a number of ways that users of Bitcoin routinely make this job easier. Things like re-using addresses, using KYC exchanges to buy or sell bitcoin and using public Bitcoin Explorers without shielding your IP address all contribute.
Dive Deeper: Beginner Bitcoin Privacy
Using a Bitcoin Mixer can help to regain some or all of this privacy and restore your coins to being pseudonymous once again. However mixers aren’t a silver bullet and you should fully read and understand the below information before using them as a lot of coin mixing services out there aren’t as perfect as they’d have you believe. There’s also been many instances of users losing their bitcoin in the process too.
How Does A Bitcoin Mixer Work?
In general a Bitcoin Mixer works by taking in a number of coins from multiple different people, “mixing” them in one or more transactions and then randomly sending those same coins out to the original people. This is usually done multiple time in a row as well to increase the difficulty of tracking which coins originally belonged to which party.