By John Ensor •
Published: 21 Sep 2023 • 12:48
Image of dark web take down.
A recent collaboration between law enforcement authorities, from various European countries, has successfully taken down an illegal online platform that specialised in the supply of illicit substances.
Hot on the heels of a significant crackdown, the Finnish Customs (Tulli), in collaboration with European partners, successfully dismantled the dark web marketplace known as ‘Piilopuoti’.
This Finnish-language platform, notorious for its large-scale sale of drugs and other illegal commodities, had been operating on the Onion Router (Tor) network since May 2022, according to a recent report from Europol.
The commendable action by the Finnish Customs was bolstered by the German Federal Criminal Office (Bundeskriminalamt) and the Lithuanian Criminal Police Bureau (Lietuvos kriminalinės policijos biuras). Europol’s European Cybercrime Centre played a pivotal role in coordinating the international activity while offering operational support and technical expertise.
For those unfamiliar, the dark web is a part of the internet that isn’t indexed by traditional search engines. It’s a haven for illegal activities, from drug trafficking to weapon sales. Accessible only through specific software like Tor, it offers users anonymity, making it a challenge for law enforcement agencies to monitor and intervene.
Europol and other police forces have been relentless in their pursuit to combat dark web activities. Their collaborative efforts, sharing of intelligence, and use of advanced technologies have led to numerous successful operations, much like the recent takedown of ‘Piilopuoti’.
The investigation continues as law enforcement agencies worldwide unite to identify the sellers and users of the platform. This monumental takedown occurred just days before the annual Dark Web Conference, scheduled for October 4-5 at Europol’s headquarters.
This exclusive event, open only to law enforcement, will see over 180 investigators from around the globe converge to discuss the latest criminal trends and developments on the dark web.
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Originally from Doncaster, Yorkshire, John now lives in Galicia, Northern Spain with his wife Nina.
He is passionate about news, music, cycling and animals.
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