Kvě 12

Industry Report: Bitcoin Expansion, Ransomware, Dark Web Drudgery

Source: bitcoin

Bitcoin Industry Report

A bitcoin market announces plans for expansion; a long-thought-dead form of ransomware makes another appearance, and it’s Silk Road all over again as Norway shuts down a dark web string. These are only some of the stories you might have missed in this week’s cryptocurrency news, so take a gander at the details below.

Also read: Industry Report: Liberty Leads to Imprisonment, Wright Steps Away

OPENBAZAAR ANNOUNCES FUTURE PLANS FOR BITCOIN MARKETPLACE

Bitcoin market OpenBazaar has announced future development plans. Among its present goals include the release of a mobile app and Tor support, and fans from around the world are showing their excitement.

The company laid out their mission via blog post:

“Today we’re releasing our high-level roadmap for OpenBazaar – our mission is to make trade free for everyone, everywhere. Our vision is for OpenBazaar to become Commerce 2.0: a permission-less and censorship-resistant protocol for global trade using Bitcoin.”

OpenBazaar’s other long-term plans include sales control center improvements and blockchain ID on-boarding. Things should take roughly 1-2 years to complete, and users are welcome to contribute ideas and comments via the company’s Slack platform.

BUCBI

Bucbi Ransomware is back, and this time, things have gotten “personal.” According to some sources, infections are not random, as the malware is targeting specific corporate networks through what’s known as RDP Brute, a force utility that allows attackers to gain access to company servers without difficulty.

The two-year-old, once dormant ransomware was first noticed by a group of security researchers. They were forced to pay a hefty fee of approximately five bitcoins to release some encrypted files following the malware’s attack on a specific Windows server. Presently, it is unclear who or what parties are behind the attacks.

KRIPOS

As NPR host Ari Shapiro states, “Bitcoin gets a lot of attention because drug dealers sometimes use it to buy and sell drugs.” Those of us who love and advocate for bitcoin can’t help but agree to a certain extent. Arguably one of the biggest stories revolving around the digital currency was the saga of Ross Ulbricht and the dark web marketplace Silk Road. Now, it seems to be happening all over again, but this time, it’s in Norway, and the investigation surrounding the dark web has been dubbed “Marco Polo” (if only he was re-discovering America).

Norwegian Police Special Service Agency Kripos has arrested 15 individuals allegedly involved with dark web drug trafficking in an operation going back as far back as 2014. Among the suspects taken into custody are purportedly five of Norway’s biggest drug kingpins. Should further proof of these allegations arise, Kripos is likely to earn itself a gold star or two.

According to Chief Investigator Olav Roisli, bitcoin was the most commonly used currency among those involved. Many attempts were made to prevent tracking despite bitcoin’s lack of anonymity on the blockchain. At press time, the agency only seems to be interested in indicting sellers, although users are being warned not to get too comfortable just yet.

Want to see any particular stories summed up in our industry report series? Let us know below!


Images courtesy of themerkle.com, removeallthreats.com & indicosys.com

The post Industry Report: Bitcoin Expansion, Ransomware, Dark Web Drudgery appeared first on Bitcoinist.net.

Industry Report: Bitcoin Expansion, Ransomware, Dark Web Drudgery

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Kvě 10

Kripos Shuts Down Major Dark Web Drugs Marketplace

Source: bitcoin

Bitcoinist_Dark Web Drug Marketplace Bitcoin

Ever since the Silk Road platform came to fruition, Bitcoin seems to become a favourite form of payment across dark web marketplaces. Kripos, the Norwegian Police Service’s specialized agency, is close to concluding their largest operation – dubbed Marco Polo –  against a drug ring on the dark web.

Also read: BitcoinAverage: Craig Wright Can’t Keep Bitcoin Down For Long

The Marco Polo Operation and Bitcoin On The Dark Web

The dark web is attracting all types of Internet criminals these days, and online drug trafficking is just one of the many types of business taking place. A recent sting by Kripos in Norway led to the arrest of fifteen individuals, all of whom were involved in drug trafficking on the dark web. This operation called Marco Polo by law enforcement has been in the works since 2014.

Ever since the Marco Polo operation began, thirteen men and two women have been indicted. In fact, five of these men are suspected of being some of the biggest Norwegian online drug kingpins. If this can be proven in court, bringing down this dark web drug marketplace is a significant notch in the belt of Kripos.

Although there is evidence pointing in the direction of “sizeable amounts of drugs’ being traded through this drug platform, the primary issue for law enforcement officials was to track down the payments. Bitcoin is the most preferred payment method among Internet criminals even though cryptocurrency is far from anonymous. All of the transactions on the Bitcoin network are logged on the blockchain in real-time,

Despite the lack of anonymity in Bitcoin, Chief Investigator Olav Roisli mentioned how the dark web criminals were using “multiple stream stages” put in place to prevent tracking the funds. This seems to indicate various marketplace members went to great lengths to obfuscate the origin and destination of their Bitcoin transactions, by using so-called “mixing” services.

For the time being, Kripos officials are only focusing in dark web marketplace sellers, rather than buyers. That being said, it appears the majority of this particular platform’s customer base is made up of young recreational drug users. Keeping in mind how this particular dark web marketplace was designed not to be found in the first place, it becomes apparent bitcoin is not to blame for facilitating this type of business. After all, consumers still have to provide personal information when buying and selling Bitcoin, removing any shred of anonymity the cryptocurrency may offer.

Note from the Author: None of the news sources name this platform officially, hence we cannot speculate on the name.

What are your thoughts on shutting down this dark web drug marketplace? Will this bring more negative attention to Bitcoin? Let us know in the comments below!

Source: Dark Web News

Images courtesy of Kripos, Shutterstock

The post Kripos Shuts Down Major Dark Web Drugs Marketplace appeared first on Bitcoinist.net.

Kripos Shuts Down Major Dark Web Drugs Marketplace

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