That was 2013, when a single Bitcoin went for around $200. As both institutional and retail investors have taken a hold of the cryptocurrency looking to make it big, Bitcoin’s value has exploded from around $1,000 per coin at the beginning of 2017 to over $15,000 at the end of 2017.
Today, if Ulbricht hadn’t lost his Bitcoin, he’d have an amount equal to around $2.2 billion.
For years, Bitcoin has been the de facto currency of black markets on the so-called dark web. Near anonymous (when used properly), easy to store, and able to be transferred without an in-person interaction, Bitcoin was a natural fit for the “Amazon for drugs,” other illicit online black market trading, and terrorism. And if these actors store significant amounts of assets in Bitcoin like Ulbricht, then it’s very possible the Bitcoin boom has made criminals assets balloon.