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posted by janrinok on Wednesday February 11 2015, @05:48AM   Printer-friendly
from the darker-than-dark dept.

Russell Berman writes at The Atlantic that the government may have won its case against Silk Road's Ross Ulbricht, but the high-profile trial gave a lot of publicity to the dark web, and both the number of sites and the volume of people using them have increased since Silk Road was shuttered. “Just as on the rest of the internet, users on the dark net are very quick to move on to new things and move away from those products and websites that seem stale and old,” says Adam Benson. The cat-and-mouse game between users of the dark web and law enforcement appears to be shifting as well. Newer dark sites (two major ones are Agora and Evolution) are likely to protect their servers by basing them in countries "hostile to U.S. law enforcement," says Nicholas Weaver. "The markets will keep moving overseas, but law enforcement will keep going after the dealers," Weaver says, referring to the people who actually ship and deliver the drugs sold online.

Evolution Marketplace is a much different animal than Silk Road, according to Dan Palumbo, the group’s research director. Evolution sells "weapons, stolen credit cards, and more nefarious items that were forbidden on both versions of Silk Road. Silk Road sold a lot of dangerous things, but operators drew the line at their version of ‘victimless crimes,’ i.e. no child pornography, weapons, or identity theft. Now, four of the top five DarkNet Marketplaces sell weapons while three of the top five sell stolen financial data." This is a darker DarkNet and it speaks to the challenge facing law enforcement as they knock one set of bad actors offline, another comes along with bigger and bolder intentions.

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  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by CoolHand on Wednesday February 11 2015, @01:21PM

    by CoolHand (438) on Wednesday February 11 2015, @01:21PM (#143556) Journal

    This seems to have been easily predictable. Western governments would be wise to end the drug war, so they can focus on other areas that actually need policing and give them a better chance of winning by reducing the amount/speed that the moles are popping up..

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  • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 11 2015, @04:10PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 11 2015, @04:10PM (#143629)

    I always find it funny how the US is so eager to go to war... War on Drugs, War on Poverty, War on Terrorism, War on Illiteracy, etc...
    The US is EXTREMELY good at going to war... but they suck at winning them...

    • (Score: 4, Insightful) by tibman on Wednesday February 11 2015, @05:05PM

      by tibman (134) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday February 11 2015, @05:05PM (#143669)

      That's because it has to be a winnable war in order to win.

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      • (Score: 3, Insightful) by tathra on Wednesday February 11 2015, @08:42PM

        by tathra (3367) on Wednesday February 11 2015, @08:42PM (#143758)

        this article is a good example of why the "War on Drugs" is unwinnable. no matter how many dealers or suppliers or chemists they bust, there will always be new ones popping up to fill the power void and collect some of the insanely high profit margins created by prohibition. the best possible scenario is for the market to be watched and regulated so it can be as safe as possible for both the buyers and sellers and so there can be some control over who can purchase (eg, age restrictions), because the market will exist and without regulation the black market defaults to anything-goes. because of drug prohibition, kids can easily get all the cocaine and heroin they could ever want, but because alcohol is regulated its much harder for kids to get.

    • (Score: 1, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 11 2015, @05:25PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 11 2015, @05:25PM (#143677)

      Suck at winning them? Come on man, World War 1 - Victorious, World War 2 - Victorious, Vietnam - Second place. We kick ass.

      • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Yog-Yogguth on Thursday February 12 2015, @08:35PM

        by Yog-Yogguth (1862) Subscriber Badge on Thursday February 12 2015, @08:35PM (#144312) Journal

        The US came third in Vietnam. First the French were beat and then they tagged the US in like some WWF match and then the US also got beat.

        Does anybody object to that? It's flawed right? Would they like to argue that the French should get third place since they fell out first?

        Okay. The US still gets third! But in this case because they folded before the Republic of South Vietnam! Aka all the people the European and American “hippies” ignored. The only benefit in this version is that the US gets to “savor” beating the French at fourth place :3

        The US government drew the wrong lessons from Vietnam and still haven't learned: it's as easy as “too much stupid” and fighting your own stupidity is hard. As an example if McCain really was tortured then instead of figuring out how to arm nazis he should spend much more of his time thinking about the people the US force fed up their anus.

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