As the final legal chapters close on Ross Ulbricht’s Silk Road website held within the “Dark Web”, the proliferation of many, many more dark markets is making international news. Authorities have closed down one of these Dark Web havens, and have confiscated thousands of bitcoin wallets in association with its use.
Is this Silk Road 2.0, 3.0, or 4.0?
Under code name “Operation Babylon”, Italian officials have shut down the site that hosted over 14,000 members, performing over 170,000 transactions using Tor’s web browser. The illegal activity said to have taken place ranged from child pornography to drug and arms sales, to credit card code and hacking kits. Over 200 drug dealers are claimed to have used the site for trafficking purposes, but this may be only one site of its kind out many.
The website is said to have been masterminded by an Italian near Naples. Bitcoin use seems to have been prevalent, with over 11,000 digital wallets connected to the site seized, containing over US$1 million euros worth of the digital currency. Michele Prestipino, the prosecutor who led the investigation, told a press conference in Rome:
“The virtual world of the Dark Web