According to an analysis of 150 different dark web forums, markets, and illegal services Recorded Future found that the dark web uses the cryptocurrency Litecoin more and more often. The reason for a decreased use of Bitcoin is, of course, transaction costs and speed.

Percentage of use

Bitcoin's popularity propelled the currency into the mainstream fast enough to make small vendors, speculators, and mom-and-pop investors get in on it, thereby slowing down the blockchain with a barrage of transactions.

One Russian dark webber said:

“What's happening at the moment is incomprehensible. Despite that I've used the
recommended commission fees, my transactions have remained pending for the past
three days, and my work has been paralyzed. Dear vendors, please implement alternative
payment options; otherwise, I will miss out on this Christmas season”

The average dark web transaction is between 50 and 300 USD and the speed of confirmation is very important, given that delays can lead to fraud and theft. High costs with increased waiting times are thereby unacceptable.

Despite this, the survey by RF shows there's still no consensus on which currency to use as a general rule on the dark web.


Bitcoin is still the dominant currency on the dark web whereas Litecoin comes in second at 30% of acceptance. The third place belongs to the altcoin Dash with 20% while fourth is occupied by Bitcoin's fork, Bitcoin Cash, at 13%. Russia favors Litecoin while Monero is most popular among the English-speaking crowd.

Bitcoin remains the most dominant cryptocurrency of the dark web, but with the looming threat of Litecoin and Dash its reign may soon be over.

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