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Dark Web: huge blow to vendors and buyers by global law enforcements

Global law enforcements deal an hard blot to vendors and buyers on Dark Web. In an ongoing operation, they made 61 arrests and shut down 50 accounts. Also seized drugs, firearms, and over €6,2 million

Dark web vendors and buyers suffered a hug blow by law enforcements from Europe, Canada and the United States. They joined forces early 2019 to target traders of illegal goods on the marketplaces. During the operation, there have been 61 arrests and 50 dark web accounts used for illegal activity were shut down. Furthermore, law enforcements executed 65 search warrants, seizing 299,5 kg of drugs, 51 firearms, and over €6,2 million (almost €4 million in cryptocurrency, €2,2 million in cash, and €35 000 in gold). They also conducted 122 interviews. These global actions were launched during last year’s Cyber Patrol Action Week at Europol’s headquarters in The Hague. Overall, 60 experts from 19 countries1, Eurojust and Europol looked for the illegal sale and signs of counterfeit goods and money, drugs, cybercrime, document fraud, non-cash payment fraud, trafficking in human beings and trafficking in firearms and explosives. 

The international agencies are working on 247 high-value targets and developed intelligence packages, identified by experts at Europol’s 2018 Cyber Patrol Action Week

The experts at Europol’s Cyber Patrol Action Week identified 247 high-value targets and developed intelligence packages that were disseminated to the concerned countries for further handling. Based on this information, hundreds of investigations are currently underway. This operation, in fact, is part of this work. “The Dark Web is not as dark as you think,” Europol’s Executive Director, Catherine De Bolle, commented. “When you buy or sell illegal goods online, you are not hidden from law enforcement and you are putting yourself in danger. This international coordinated approach demonstrates law enforcement’s determination to tackle crime on the dark web and to reduce the number of people who fall victim to criminals selling life endangering products or scamming them for their own gain.” The operation is still ongoing in different countries.

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