Police are getting better at targeting operations on the dark web - a part of the internet that is accessible only through specialised tools. This latest raid follows the takedown of the Wall Street market last year, which was then thought to be the second-largest illegal online market on the dark web.
Police forces around the world have seized more than $6.5m (£5m) in cash and virtual currencies, as well as drugs and guns in a co-ordinated raid on dark web marketplaces.
Some 179 people were arrested across Europe and the US, and 500kg (1,102lb) of drugs and 64 guns confiscated.
It ends the “golden age” of these underground marketplaces, Europol said.
“The hidden internet is no longer hidden”, said Edvardas Sileris, head of Europol’s cyber-crime centre.
The operation, known as DisrupTor, was a joint effort between the Department of Justice and Europol. It is believed that the criminals engaged in tens of thousands of sales of illicit goods and services across the US and Europe.
Drugs seized including fentanyl, oxycodone, methamphetamine, heroin, cocaine, ecstasy and MDMA.
A COLLABORATIVE EFFORT TO TACKLE THE DARK WEB
Operation DisrupTor was composed of a series of separate but complementary joint operations coordinated by Europol and Eurojust, all aimed at making a global impact on the sale of illicit goods on the dark web.
This operation was the result of a collaborative effort between the law enforcement and judicial authorities of Austria, Cyprus, Germany, the Netherlands, Sweden, Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom and the United States.
The dark web “is not a fairy tale” said Europol
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