- Νομός: ΠΕΛΛΑ
- Καταχωρημένα: August 10, 2021 5:26 pm
- Λήγει: 11 ημέρες, 3 ώρες
The darknet – a wild west for fake coronavirus ‘cures ‘? The truth is more difficult (and regulated)
The coronavirus pandemic has spawned reports of unregulated health products and fake cures being sold on the dark web. These include black market PPE, illicit medications like the widely touted “miracle” drug chloroquine, and fake COVID-19 “cures” including blood supposedly from recovered coronavirus patients.
These dealings have once more focused public attention on this little-understood section of the internet. Nearly a decade since it started being applied to a substantial scale, the dark web continues to be a lucrative safe haven for traders in a variety of illegal goods and services, especially illicit drugs.
Black market trading on the dark web is carried out primarily through darknet marketplaces or cryptomarkets. These are anonymised trading platforms that directly connect buyers and sellers of a variety of illegal goods and services – much like legitimate trading websites such as for instance eBay.
So just how do darknet marketplaces work? And simply how much illegal trading of COVID-19-related products is happening via these online spaces?
Not just a free-for-all
There are greater than a dozen darknet marketplaces in operation. Protected by powerful encryption technology, authorities around the globe have largely didn’t contain their growth. A steadily increasing proportion of illicit drug users around the globe report sourcing their drugs online. In Australia, we’ve one of many world market onion (www.enfchurch.com – http://www.enfchurch.com/forums/users/marguerite16w/)’s highest concentrations of darknet drug vendors per capita.
Contrary to popular belief, cryptomarkets aren’t the “lawless spaces” they’re often presented as in the news. Market prohibitions exist on all mainstream cryptomarkets. Universally prohibited goods and services include: hitman services, trafficked human organs and snuff movies.
Although cryptomarkets lie outside the realm of state regulation, each one of these is set up and maintained by a central administrator who, along with employees or associates, is responsible for the market’s security, dispute resolution between buyers and sellers, and the charging of commissions on transactions.
Administrators may also be ultimately in charge of determining what can and can’t be sold on their cryptomarket. These decisions tend informed by:
the attitudes of the surrounding community comprising buyers and sellers
the extent of consumer demand and supply for many products
the revenues a site makes from commissions charged on transactions
and the perceived “heat” that could be attracted from law enforcement in the trading of particularly dangerous illegal goods and services.
Experts delve to the dark web
A report from the Australian National University published a week ago looks at several hundred coronavirus-related products available across a dozen cryptomarkets, including supposed vaccines and antidotes.
While the research confirms some unscrupulous dark web traders are indeed exploiting the pandemic and seeking to defraud naïve customers, this information must certanly be contextualised with a few important caveats.
Firstly, the amount of dodgy covid-related products for sale on the dark web is relatively small. According to this research, they take into account about 0.2% of listed items. The overwhelming most of products were those we are already knowledgeable about – particularly illicit drugs such as for example cannabis and MDMA.
Also, while the study dedicated to products listed on the market, these are likely listings for products that either do no exist or are listed with the specific intention to defraud a customer.
Thus, the particular sale of fake coronavirus “cures” on the dark web is likely minimal, at best.
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