All currency (money) has a start and endpoint regardless if it’s used for legitimate or illicit purposes. But money can ultimately be traced in the end, whether through a cryptocurrency exchange or personal/ business financial records. All transactions are some sort of contract.

Although sites act as mixers or tumblers where digital currency is sent to “wash” the transactions, attempting to obfuscate the transaction by spreading it out across numerous additional transactions, the ledger is public, open for inspection, and will eventually end somewhere. Getting from point A to point B may involve an overwhelming number of transactions to follow; therefore, it would be advisable to utilize a visualization program or website to aid in keeping track of where you are and how you got to a certain place in the blockchain. When taking notes, making the process more manageable for investigators is only to use the first six characters of a wallet address or transaction.

The Change Address – Identifying the Owner

Let’s take a look at another example of a transaction involving change, where all of the addresses are listed, so that you have a clear idea as to how it would look. If you go to Block Explorer at and search for the address of 39VwKmgX2eAz2fVJHBJnEjRdL8D9XPviGM, which was in our last example. In doing so, you will see the latest transactions relating to that address.

Information Sharing: It’s extremely important to partner with other law enforcement organizations and private companies to investigate cases of cryptocurrency. It’s only through information sharing, technology, partnerships, and training that we will be successful in this arena.

Refer to 13.3.1 through 13.3.4 for blockchain visualization systems.


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