Thursday, October 3, 2013

Michael Judy - Silk Road Shut Down

This morning, it was announced that one of the biggest internet-based black markets was shut down by the federal government.  The so-called "Silk Road" was an "ebay-style" marketplace for moving illegal items such as drugs, forged documents and hacking services.  It is estimated that over one billion dollars passed through the website over the span of it's two year existence. 

The 29-year-old website overseer, who was taken into custody on Tuesday, was "disinhibited" by, what John Suler refers to as, "Invisibility."  While operating the underground website, he went by the nickname "Dread Pirate Roberts," keeping his true identity a secret.  Furthermore, the website operated on what is called the "Tor" network, and used bitcoins as the primary form of currency.  This kept the website nearly untraceable and anonymous to the FBI.  Ironically,  however, "Dread Pirate Roberts" used his actual name and email while seeking tech support for his website, breaking his shield of invisibility and leading to his capture.

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