Just as the Electronic Age has been superseded by the Digital Age, the Age of the Internet has superseded them all. The Internet is a worldwide telecommunications network. Using a system of telephone lines, cables, satellites and wireless connectivity, it connects PCs and other devices to the World Wide Web. Modern PCs as well as Mobile phone devices such as Smart Phones, Laptops, Tablets and some TVs, can all connect to the Internet. Internet is therefore, a global digital WAN (Wide Area Network). Many data lines with high bandwidth comprise the backbone of the Internet. These data lines connect efficiently to the Internet Hubs that are responsible to distribute data to ISPs and Web Servers. The Internet is gradually beginning to take over the complete communications of all human civilizations. The main advantage of the Internet is that it is able to connect billions of PCs and similar devices to each other. Sharing information between Users and the ability for automation are the two main advantages. Apart from the fact that communication is not only much easier, but also vastly cheaper, with the Internet. However, for all its benefits, the internet is often deemed to be intrusive, and unable to ensure privacy or security to information or communication. The need for secrecy is felt, not only by private citizens, but also by large institutions like Banking Services. But the most disturbing aspect of this need for secrecy is that, it has spawned the Dark Web. This in-turn has raised a critical question – What was the Silk Road Market Place on the Dark Web?
The Dark Web Beckons
The Dark Net is a network of sites whose contents are encrypted. The software encrypts User traffic. The Dark Web talks about a wide array of content which is kept invisible for the day to day World Wide Web browsing. The encrypted content is accessible only through a secure browsing tool, like TOR, which passes the User’s IP address through a set of complex TOR nodes to provide absolute secrecy to User/s. The Dark Web was not originally a criminal network. In-fact in the mid 1990s, it was the US Navy which developed it for the Government. But in 2004, it was Open Sourced and it went public. Now TOR is the preferred Dark Web browser that the majority of people use to surf the Dark Web anonymously. Originally a dark web surfer might just be trying to access free sex sites privately to hide their web activity from say their spouse. The anonymity of this channel was overrun with far more dangerous and illegal intentions. A number of criminal activities use the Dark Web to communicate without intrusion, which is why it is now being investigated by the Law and Police of many countries.
Silk Road In The Darkness
The original Silk Road stretched for thousands of miles from China to Europe. It was in the open, and there were never any attempt to hide the route from travelers. Except for the dangers inherent in travelling in those days, trading on the Silk Road was fully legal, though of course permission from the Trading Posts had to be sought. But the Silk Road on the Dark Net was a completely different proposition. This Silk Road led to an online Black Market, which has been since widely denoted as the first modern Dark Net Market, majorly said to be the best platform to sell illegal drugs. Visitors to this Market were protected, with anonymity, by the TOR hidden service. Online Users easily browsed this market while remaining anonymous and secure without monitoring of traffic.
The Silk Road Market Place
But the question about the nature of the Silk Road and the Dark Web had not yet been answered. What was the Silk Road Market Place on the Dark Web? The answer to this question was shocking indeed. The hidden market on the Dark Net was being used for the worst kind of criminal activities, like a platform for selling Illegal Drugs, Counterfeit Money, Fake Birth Certificates and Fake IDs. Finally, when it was found that there was also this massive flow in the trading of illegal armaments to suspicious buyers, with the potential of huge disturbances, the FBI was put in charge of the investigation, supported by the International Police fraternity such as InterPol. It was found that the pseudonym of the owner of the Silk Road Market place was someone called ‘Dread Pirate Roberts’. The man behind the pseudonym managed to operate it from sometime in 2011 up-to September 2013, when he was finally caught by the FBI. Known as the Silk Road 2.0, this market place was actually owned by the man behind the pseudonym, Ross William Ulbricht.
At The End
The Silk Road creator was finally sentenced to Life in Prison without Parole. The judgment was delivered in 2015. Some of the other most disturbing activities on the Silk Road market place on the Dark Web have been found to be Trafficking of Human Organs, Murder for Hire, Networks of Terrorists etc.