Posts Tagged ‘Silk Road’

They used to be known as the “Amazon” or “eBay” of drugs, but modern dark web drug sales use a system more comparable to Yelp or TripAdvisor

 

Ever since Silk Road, the first mass-market point-and-click dark web drugs bazaar, made its debut in January 2011, the DNMs (darknet markets) have been invariably compared to popular e-commerce platforms. Reports would either refer to “the Amazon of drugs” or “the eBay of drugs” and point the parallels with those websites. Like Amazon, they were a one-stop shop for every drug imaginable, that could be popped into a basket and sent to the buyer with a range of shipping options. Like eBay, the sites brought buyers and sellers together and held payment in escrow until both sides were satisfied. Buyers would leave star ratings and feedback for the sellers, who would go out of their way to ensure their product and customer service would gain them a 5-star review.

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The man alleged to be Silk Road’s Variety Jones, Roger Thomas Clark, has finally been extradited from Thailand, where he has spent 2 1/2 years in Bangkok Remand, to face trial in the USA.

The pic the prison guard took with my phone

Variety Jones was basically unheard of until the trial of Ross Ulbricht, where he was revealed as a sort of behind-the-scenes puppet master, a Svengali-type figure who, according to the chat logs found on Ulbricht’s computer, was the first to suggest murder as a solution to a problem staff member.

I visited Clark (aka Plural of Mongoose) in Klong Phem Prison several times when researching The Darkest Web. Here’s a taster of what happened:

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You can’t have a burner phone without a prepaid SIM, so I guess it’s only fitting that Telstra is using my Fake ID to illustrate their identity requirements

There is a long history of people having their photos nicked without attribution and payment by large corporations. It is the reason the very excellent ‘for exposure’ exists. I’ve never actually had a photo deemed steal-worthy til now, as alerted to me by an AllThingsVice reader.

Terry Davis was recently filling out an application for a prepaid Sim card “for a friend” when he thought something looked oddly familiar.

 

He clicked on the photo of the sample licence to enlarge it and sure enough, there it was:

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A couple of weeks ago I got back from an 8-week trip around the globe to meet with all manner of dark web types in preparation for my upcoming book, Darkest Web. Here’s a taster of what went down with each.

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THAILAND

Variety Jones – mentor to Dread Pirate Roberts

Well, at this point, still “alleged” Variety Jones, but most certainly Plural of Mongoose, aka the Megabyte Megalomaniac, aka Roger Thomas Clark.

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I was digging through my Silk Road archives when researching parts of my new book, and came up with a couple of little nuggets surrounding the latest “rogue agent” allegations that I don’t think have been reported yet.

Yuhendri Fajri via flickr.com, poorly adulterated

TL;DR:

  • What we assumed to be a simple Silk Road scam in early 2013 may have been law enforcement intelligence gathering + another Force/Bridges theft
  • There may be an explanation why Ross Ulbricht didn’t move to Belize after the controlled delivery of fake IDs to him in July 2013
  • If you’ve ever spoken to me, chances are the three-letter-agencies know about it

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Today’s blog is a guest post by jesusofrave. Jesusofrave is one of the most enduring brand names of the darknet markets since the early days of the original Silk Road when they sold direct to users.

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Fast forward 4 years, and jesusofrave is a wholesale supplier of MDMA and LSD, operating across all major darknet markets, as well as supplying direct through their own dark web site, The Church. They have some major plans for the near future, including providing significant assistance and donations to organizations using psychedelics in therapy.

Here they tell how they got to where they are.

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A couple of people have asked me about the book I mentioned in my last post. I recently threw in my nice, steady, well-paying but ultimately creatively unfulfilling tech-writing job. So here’s all the things I have in the pipeline that I’m finally getting around to.

This lot should keep me chained to the keyboard for a while

This lot should keep me chained to the keyboard for a while

Another non-fiction book

First, I’m working on a proposal for my agent for a second non-fiction book, Darkest Web, which goes behind the scenes into several different aspects of the dark web that I’ve researched and/or been involved with in-depth. Hopefully that will find a home with a traditional publisher.

The problem with writing serious non-fiction stuff is lawyers. Lawyers legalled me out of about 20,000 words of Silk Road and I had to scramble to fill the gap. Other lawyers stopped part of Darkest Web before it even got properly committed to the page. Which leads me to…

The Dark Web diaries

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