Australian Parents Express Fears Over Dark Web Drug Sellers Using Crypto

Wayne Jones by Wayne Jones - 09:04 PM Sep 03, 2019
Australian Parents Express Fears Over Dark Web Drug Sellers Using Crypto

According to Australian news reports, parents are expressing growing fears over teens using cryptocurrency to buy drugs online.

The SBS reported that an increasing number of tech-savvy Australian teens, some as young as 13, are finding new ways to buy hazardous drugs without being traced using cryptocurrencies. Kids are using virtual currencies including Bitcoin and Monero to buy large amounts of illicit substances like MDMA, LSD, and speed (methamphetamine) on the dark web.

Detective Inspector Gordon Arbinja from NSW Police, says the issue of teens buying drugs on the dark web has grown exponentially over the last decade. He commented: This all basically started after Bitcoin came about in 2009 and then dark markets soon after. It’s easier for the children to buy these drugs because they use the anonymity of the internet.” The problem has gotten so pervasive that NSW Police formed a separate Cybercrime Squad in 2018 tasked with fighting crime on the dark web.

The fight against online drugs

Despite enforcement activities over the last several years that led to the shutdown of countless illegal online markets, many new ones keep popping up.  In 2013, the FBI took down the Silk Road, the world’s first online drug market, and its founder Ross Ulbricht was sentenced to life in prison. However, the site’s successor ‘AlphaBay’ grew to 10 times the size of Silk Road, with as much as $800,000 in transactions processed through the site each day.

Alpha Bay was shut down in 2017, but many other illicit sites have sprung up in its place.

Dark web marketplaces are seen as one of the central sources of fentanyl and other synthetic opioids. These drugs are often produced in China and sent to users found on the darknet. The packages coming in from China are stipulated to be the cause of opioid catastrophe in the US.  That means the fight against online drug sales is starting to look like the war on drugs in the physical world. There are raids and site takedowns, and a few people are arrested. Then after a while, the trade and markets pop up somewhere else.

Solution measures

Australian Authorities report that they’re stepping up the use of X-rays, detector dogs, trace detection equipment and expert intelligence analysis in a bid to curb the illicit trade.

Over the past year, border authorities have inspected 36.4 million pieces of mail and made 35,000 detections of illegal and restricted drugs concealed in packages flowing from every corner of the world.  The dark web is also nurturing a host of other criminal activities. As Cryptoknowmics had reported, the UN revealed that cryptocurrencies are making it tough to conduct online child abuse investigations. The report pointed out that crypto adds another layer of anonymity that favors criminals.

About The Author
Wayne Jones

Wayne JonesAm Wayne, a Blockchain enthusiast and expert in crypto trading. Currently, I cover trendy issues on digital currencies.


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