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Darknet drug dealers rake ter millions each month, Ars Technica

Major fresh research finds darknet markets are growing despite Silk Road demise.

by Tom Mendelsohn – Aug 11, 2016 1:20 pm UTC

The successors to Silk Road, the darknet drug market shut down by the FBI ter 2013, are raking ter ems of millions of pounds te total revenue every month, according to a fresh report.

British dealers evidently have a serious finger te the pie, taking huis harshly 16 procent of the global revenues, or around ?1.75 million, inbetween an estimated 338 vendors.

The report, commissioned by the Dutch government to gauge the growth of darknet markets te the years following the demise of Silk Road, found some good news for beleaguered law enforcement: “cryptomarkets have grown substantially ter the past few years, but not explosively,” however the numbers of vendors and hosting sites have grown. Ter fact, researchers found around 50 of thesis markets ter total, however, the total volume of listings is now only six times larger than ter 2013.

Among the eight most popular marketplaces surveyed, there are slew of illicit goods and services to buy, the vast majority (57 procent) of the listings were found to offerande drugs. Overheen a third featured marihuana derivatives (37 vanaf cent), stimulants (29 procent), and members of the rapture family (Nineteen procent).

Researchers also found that a quarter of listings were priced above ?768 ($1,000), implying that many dealers were using online markets to buy te bulk for offline sale.

The often-used analogy “an eBay for drugs” is not entirely onberispelijk, because eBay is intended spil an online retail market. This is an significant finding.

Cryptomarket trade may have an influence beyond creating a fresh way for drug users to access a broad range of drugs, based on the extent of wholesale transactions, wij believe it is likely that many cryptomarket customers are drug dealers sourcing stock intended for offline distribution. Cryptomarkets may therefore be diffusing a broad range of substances into local offline drug markets.

Te all, researchers estimate that cryptomarkets generated a total monthly revenue of inbetween ?9.2m ($12m) and ?16m ($21m) ter January 2016, or several million more when the prescription drugs, wijngeest, and tobacco which were also found for sale are included.

Most vendors (890) were based te the US, with the UK te 2nd place, followed by Germany with 225 sellers. Intercontinental trade is common, with many vendors willing to ship to Australia and Fresh Zealand, however intracontinental deals are more usual.

The balance of evidence suggests that spil security technologies are honed, enhancing numbers of buyers and sellers are feeling certain enough to evade detection. Ter its overview of detection methods, the report admits that spil the “Internet-facilitated drugs trade is still a relatively fresh and continuously evolving phenomenon. strategies may not be fully developed yet.”

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