Some users commented that the seize of Darkmarket could be something like Operation Bayonet (coordinated international LE operation that took down Alphabay and Hansa), although for the moment it is only confirmed the seize of Darkmarket and Yellow Brick looks more like a regular exit scam. As Darkmarket did not force the encryption of messages and orders between sellers and buyers this operation will lead to the detention of vendors and/or buyers who did not take OPSEC seriously.
As most of you already know, recent attacks against consensus authority nodes took down all v3 hidden services (a fix is on the way, expected to be launched on 0.4.5.x-stable version of tor). Once that attacks were stopped, markets and services were back up again except Darkmarket. We cannot know if LE was behind this attack or it helped the German police to score a touchdown (another one) against the darknet community. So, yes, nobody thought that this day was going to come, the police and of course the German one, has again F***** the darknet community, as the title says, DarkMarket and surely your money along with it have been seized by German police in cooperation with many other international angry cops.
Where are the women?
The vast majority of you know that the market was supposedly administered, created, maintained and all the movement exclusively by women, yeah, women, in plural as well.
So let’s get to the point. Were they real women? Well, If you were imagining in your mind Darkmarket's team as a group of sexy young women into hacking and security stuff, you were imagining something very far from reality because at least the alleged administrator is a 34-year-old Australian man.
Darkmarket was among the top markets along with WHM and it has been shut down by the police in Germany, arresting the alleged and for what at the moment it seems the only administrator of the market.
How was it?
Oldenburg police said the raid took place over the weekend. Investigators shut down the servers on Monday. The detainee appeared to operate close to the Danish border but 20 servers that the market used in Moldova and Ukraine were seized as well. It was a multinational law enforcement leaded by Germany and involving Australia, Denmark, Moldova, Ukraine, the United Kingdom (the National Crime Agency), and the USA (DEA, FBI, and IRS) with Europol playing a "coordinating role"
The market that many users and admins underestimate and said would never get to anything important in darknet since it was created using the eckmar script became recently the TOP #1 marketplace after the exit scam of Empire which was followed by Icarus and Deepsea Market.
Darknet Market with almost 150k listings and we cite according to the police:
half a million users and transacted business in cryptocurrencies equivalent to a value of € 140 million ($ 170 million).
and according to another quote in another source:
A total of at least 320,000 transactions were carried out via the marketplace, with more than 4,650 Bitcoin and 12,800 Monero - two of the most common cryptocurrencies
Darkmarket was by far the most active market in terms of llistings.
Recently, The Onion Web interviewed darkmarket in what would be their last interview without anyone of us knowing at that time. You can find the interview on the web. We want to add as a note that all security questions were bypassed by them. Questions like eckmar script security, auditions and about the agent they had infiltrated as moderator.
It still too early to draw conclusions as we cannot draw the full picture due to the lack of information. Could be possible that the recent attack to Tor network's consensus servers leaded investigators to Darkmarket's seizure? It could be, although the most plausible answer is a combination of bad OPSEC (there are rumors about he was an australian vendor called FreeThePlant (active in Dream and WSM) and someone leaked his ID few months ago) with the lack of needed technical skills behind Darkmarket's operators alongside that this was the second time that Darkmarket's servers are seized, the first time occured when Cyberbunker was seized a few more than one year ago. Information gathered from the first seize could be crucial to identify Darkmarket's operator and LE agencies could wait patiently until the jackpot was high before get it.
So now, what?
Sellers and buyers who have received something from Darkmarket recently whether they are orders, cryptocurrencies, we recommend that you be careful, if you plan on selling those cryptocurrencies that you hopefully withdrew just before its seizure, I recommend that you mix (wash) them well.
This on the other hand is good news for other markets, recently many markets have emerged and some of them promise a lot (in alphabetical order) Aurora market, Cartel Market Vice City, World Market. You can check the whole darknet map on The Onion Web.
What we can confirm for sure is that the crown as current top market returns to WHM
We will keep you updated.
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