- Street: Piazza Giuseppe Garibaldi 81
- City: Chiozzola
- State: Indiana
- Country: Italy
- Zip/Postal Code: 43050
The darknet – a wild west for fake coronavirus ‘cures ‘? The truth is harder (and regulated)
The coronavirus pandemic has spawned reports of unregulated health products and fake cures being obsessed about the dark web. These include black market PPE, illicit medications including the widely touted “miracle” drug chloroquine, and fake COVID-19 “cures” including blood supposedly from recovered coronavirus patients.
These dealings have once again focused public attention with this little-understood part of the internet. Nearly 10 years as it started being applied to a significant scale, the dark web remains 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 – just like legitimate trading websites such as 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 really a free-for-all
There are now greater than a dozen darknet marketplaces in operation. Protected by powerful encryption technology, authorities all over the world have largely failed to 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 the world’s highest concentrations of darknet drug vendors per capita.
Unlike popular belief, cryptomarkets are not 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 away from realm of state regulation, each one is established and maintained by a central administrator who, along with employees or associates, is accountable for the darkode market – https://kidultkingdom.com/topic/the-implications-of-failing-to-world-market-when-launching-your-online-business/’s security, dispute resolution between buyers and sellers, and the charging of commissions on transactions.
Administrators will also be ultimately accountable for determining so what can and can’t be sold on their cryptomarket. These decisions are likely informed by:
the attitudes of the surrounding community comprising buyers and sellers
the extent of consumer demand and supply for certain products
the revenues a website makes from commissions charged on transactions
and the perceived “heat” that could be attracted from police in the trading of particularly dangerous illegal goods and services.
Experts delve into the dark web
A report from the Australian National University published a week ago discusses several hundred coronavirus-related products available across twelve 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, these details should really be contextualised with several important caveats.
Firstly, the number of dodgy covid-related products for sale on the dark web is relatively small. According to this research, they account for about 0.2% of most listed items. The overwhelming most products were those we are already familiar with – particularly illicit drugs such as cannabis and MDMA.
Also, while the analysis focused on products listed for sale, these are likely listings for products that either do no exist or are listed with the particular intention to defraud a customer.
Thus, the specific sale of fake coronavirus “cures” on the dark web is probable minimal, at best.
12 toplam, 1 bugün