Silk Road 2.0 suffered a similar fate when it was taken down along with dozens of other sites in a single day following a six month, 17-nation police operation called Operation Onymous.Nobody’s come clean about how the police managed to pull off Operation Onymous.Users are anonymous and protected by a raft of privacy features baked directly into the Tor browser, which is the browser used to access it.That leaves law enforcement not knowing where the websites are, who owns them, who uses them or who to arrest. The reality is that while it’s hard to see in the dark, it’s not impossible to find things and over the last few years plenty of people who thought that Tor was a cloak of invisibility have come a cropper.There aren’t many .onion sites on the Dark Web and when a new one appears the chances are that its arrival is of interest to many, many different law enforcement agencies around the globe.Right now there are only about 7000 active Dark Web sites – that’s one for every five people employed by the FBI.The Dark Web is a small and secretive part of the regular web that’s become a haven for drug markets, paedophiles and sex traffickers.It’s dark because it uses encryption to hide the locations of everything on it from everything else.
It seems that FBI hackers took down Silk Road, the Dark Web’s biggest and most notorious ‘Dark Market’, and they’ve been linked with attempts to get around Tor’s defences using malware.
Tor might be a very capable piece of technology built by very clever people but sophisticated tools are no match for operators who don’t know what they’re doing.
Using Tor, or setting up an anonymous .onion website, does not make you akin to an elite hacker.
It takes some serious muscle to search the whole of that haystack but almost anyone can scan the Dark Web for sites with security flaws in just a few hours.
Even with your site locked down tight there are plenty of banana skins to slide on – all the anonymity in the world is worth nothing if you go and use a regular website like Reddit to tell everyone how terribly clever you are or you leave Exif data in your photos (the metadata that reveals when and where they were taken).