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‘Largest illegal darknet marketplace’ DarkMarket taken offline
Authorities say the darknet platform had fifty per cent of a million users, where drugs, counterfeit money, stolen bank card data, anonymous SIM cards and malware were traded. The suspected operator was arrested in Germany.
German prosecutors in the cities of Koblenz and Oldenburg said on Tuesday that they’d shut down what was “probably the biggest illegal marketplace on the Darknet ” called DarkMarket and arrested the man believed to operate it near Germany’s border with Denmark.
The detained man, considered to be DarkMarket’s operator, is just a 34-year-old Australian national.
Authorities say drugs, counterfeit money, stolen credit card data, anonymous SIM cards and malware were all traded on the webpage, which had a fifty per cent of a million users and transacted business in cryptocurrencies equivalent to a value of €140 million ($170 million).
Oldenburg police said the raid took place over the weekend. “Investigators were able to shut down industry and switch off the server on Monday,” prosecutors said.
DarkMarket’s bust wasn’t the initial for German authorities, which have discovered illegal platform operators on German soil in recent years. In 2019, Koblenz prosecurots announced the discovery of darknet servers hosted from a former NATO bunker in a sleepy German town.
Authorities say the probe that uncovered DarkMarket involved a months-long international police operation.
US agencies such as the FBI, DEA narcotics police force division and IRS tax authority all contributed to the investigation, along side police from Australia, Britain, Denmark, darkode reborn – http://[email protected]/sht/index.php/component/kide/-/index.php?option=com_kide Switzerland, Ukraine and Moldova, with Europol playing a “coordinating role.”
“A total of at the least 320,000 transactions were carried out via industry, with an increase of than 4,650 Bitcoin and 12,800 Monero – two of the very most common cryptocurrencies – changing hands,” Oldenburg authorities added.
At the time of its closure, DarkMarket had more than 2,400 vendors.
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