Recently, Dread was put into maintenance, a maintenance session that we thought would last just for a few hours. But two days later and without any communication from Dread team, Hugbunter (Dread founder and administrator) communicated to all his users through a signed message the reasons of why this maintenance session was taking longer than any other made before, he also apologized for the downtime and lack of communication. He pointed out that this was the biggest update ever done before on the platform and he gave us the good news that Dread would be back online in a few hours. You can read more about this in the first report we made about these events.
Unfortunately, 4 days after this last message, the site continues in ''maintenance'' and the worst comes now, since only a couple of hours ago, Paris (Dread moderator) has announced the following message on the platform:
Below, the announcement in text version in case you need to copy it:
-----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE-----
Bitcoin Blockheight: 596837
Block Hash: 00000000000000000001392879d1aa00ceef235690227437315aa003593e594e
HugBunter's deadman has been switched. It has been three full days without any contact when in all purposes the site update should have been pushed already. Hug does disappear at times and recently he disappeared for just over a day do to personal problems. All I can hope is he is alive and well. Not harmed, captured, or dead.
However we must assume the worse in this case. If something happend and he is alive he will be able to validate himself with a signed PGP message and some internal information.
If he does not return in one weeks time from his message all server's content will be removed and the source code for dread will be released to the open public. In it's current state (without the upgrades that HugBunter was suppost to push three days ago) the site would be full of spam and phishing in no time. On the final days before dread's maintance system was turned on, hours of time per day was spent removing content and accounts spamming the forum. It was unusable.
This downtime was only suppost to be a few days at most to get the final touches to the codebase upgrade done without needing to handle all the spam at the same time. While HugBunter at times does disappear for days he generally doesn't do it when dread is down and can't be brought back up. I just hope he is alive.
There might be a simple explaination for this (health problems for example) but until that time we must assume the worse.
At this time if you need a darknet discussion forum there is
Darknet Avengers: http://avengersdutyk3xf.onion
Envoy Forum: http://envoys5appps3bin.onion
The Hub Forum: http://thehub7xbw4dc5r2.onion
I wish everyone the best,
-----BEGIN PGP SIGNATURE-----
-----END PGP SIGNATURE-----
The countdown has begun. If in a week, Hugbunter has not given signs of life, the forum, considered as the center or the capital of the darknet, will be destroyed and its code will be published as open source.
So, apart from the announcement by the moderator, what else do we know?
There is currently no official news, so we can only speculate on what is happening.
We have been researching and looking at opinions of experienced users. Caleb a cryptomarket researcher http://medium.com/@c5 is confident about what happened with Hugbunter, so he updated the location of his twitter to ''HugBunter has been arrested''.
Dark.fail recommends users to take security measures, such as changing passwords in case you use the same password on several sites.