The Bundeskriminalamt apprehended a Viennese man (he has not been named by authorities till now) on October 13, 2015, according to reports. The reports also indicate that the authorities seized illegal substances including 1 kg. of ecstasy, 2.8 kg. of amphetamines, LSD blotters, cocaine and a number of research drugs from the house of the 31-year-old Alpha Bay Market vendor. Additionally, the police found illegal guides on his computer and a tableting machine, which, according to them, could be made use of in the production of speed pills and ecstasy. In the dark web, this vendor was widely known by the name Shansa.
The authorities found out that Shansa, the Alpha Bay vendor, carried out as many as 182 drug sales transactions internationally. He sold illegal substances not only in Europe and the United States, but also in Australia and even in India. According to authorities, he also executed 73 domestic illegal substance sale transactions with the buyers from Austria. In a period of just about five months, the darknet market vendor was able to make as much as 15,000 Euro through the sale of illegal substances, according to a report published by the law enforcement authorities.
Alpha Bay Market
Last year, Alpha Bay Market had reported that the number of users on their website had hit the 200,000 mark. The admin of the darknet marketplace had conveyed this news through a post published on the forums. The admin had also thanked the users, on behalf of all of the site’sstaff, the users for their continued support, faith and effort in shaping up their website up as a top-grade online black market.
The site experienced tremendous growth and became one of the biggest darknet black market operators after Agora was closed down in 2015. Alpha Bay introduced several updates to their website and added a range of functionalities in order to maintain their status in the dark web. And through ScamWatch, Alpha Bay was able to stop most of the vendor exit scams, ban many scammers and also offer help to victims by processing their refund requests using the balance funds available in the accounts of banned vendors.
Alpha Bay experienced a DDoS attack in December last year and as part of their mitigation effort they introduced additional changes, including UI upgrade and, most importantly, the PGP-signed deposit address upgrade, which is meant to handle the dreaded onion cloner phishing scams. They also advised users that they verify the PGP signatures of their deposit addresses against the market PGP key available on the website’s “Contact” page.
In February 2016, Alpha Bay introduced several improvements to their wallets and withdrawal systems with a view to enhance the anonymity of the users of their marketplace. This was followed with the introduction of two-factor authentication (2FA) in March 2016 in order to ensure more security to user accounts. 2FA requires login attempts to be cleared by a user by providing another piece of information, for example, a code sent to their mobile number. This enables Alpha Bay to segregate genuine and not-so-genuine logins attempts.
Alpha Bay Market, which came into existence after the closure of Silk Road 2.0, is an online black market that operates on the Tor network. Launched towards the end of 2014, the website experienced a great deal of patronage within a short span of time. In about a years’ time, Alpha Bay Market became the biggest online black market.
On Alpha Bay Market, the category that experiences maximum sales is drugs. The website has tens of thousands of drug listings, including cocaine, marijuana and MMDA, among others. Watches (counterfeit or stolen), guns, and stolen credit card information are also sold on the site.
All said and done, Alpha Bay Market is one among the few online black markets that offer multiple security measures like Multisig transactions (2/3), 2FA, Withdrawal PIN, Forced vendor PGP and vendor bond. In addition, the website rates vendors on the basis of customer reviews so as to prevent scamming vendors as much as possible.