BBC: Dark web drugs raid leads to 179 arrests

BBC: Dark web drugs raid leads to 179 arrests. “Police forces around the world have seized more than $6.5m (£5m) in cash and virtual currencies, as well as drugs and guns in a co-ordinated raid on dark web marketplaces. Some 179 people were arrested across Europe and the US, and 500kg (1,102lb) of drugs and 64 guns confiscated.”

ABC News (Australia): Social media has provided a new marketplace for drugs and police are struggling to keep up

ABC News (Australia): Social media has provided a new marketplace for drugs and police are struggling to keep up. “With so many in lockdown because of coronavirus, or with limited access to clubs and parties where small quantities of drugs are traditionally traded, selling drugs has become more digitised than ever. And social media is the perfect forum. The internet is embraced by dealers, and buyers, for its simplicity and global reach. But while large drug trading websites like Dream Market or Silk Road have been shut down by law enforcement, social media has emerged as a flourishing new marketplace made up of thousands of small-time dealers who sell tiny amounts of drugs to individual users.”

Navy to sailors: Please stop buying LSD online (Task & Purpose)

Task & Purpose: Navy to sailors: Please stop buying LSD online . “The Naval Criminal Investigative Service has a message for America’s sailors: Please, for the love of Poseidon and the Seven Seas, stop buying hallucinogens in the dark corners of the Internet. NCIS last week issued a warning to sailors to the risks of acquiring LSD on the so-called ‘dark web,’ the network of often-illicit sites accessible through specialized browsers that offer users ‘perceived anonymity.'”

Phys .org: Why drug sellers see the internet as a lucrative safe haven

Phys .org: Why drug sellers see the internet as a lucrative safe haven. “More than six years after the demise of Silk Road, the world’s first major drug cryptomarket, the dark web is still home to a thriving trade in illicit drugs. These markets host hundreds, or in some cases thousands, of people who sell drugs, commonly referred to as ‘vendors.’ The dark web offers vital anonymity for vendors and buyers, who use cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin to process transactions.”

Armed guards, secret location: Inside an illegal marijuana bazaar publicized on Instagram (CNBC)

CNBC: Armed guards, secret location: Inside an illegal marijuana bazaar publicized on Instagram. “Shopping for illicit vape cartridges on Instagram is astonishingly simple. Open the app, plug in a hashtag such as #vapecartsforsale and — voilà — multiple posts appear with pictures of THC cartridges. In the comments or caption section, sellers advertise their products and post phone numbers for would-be buyers.”

Boston Magazine: How to Sell Drugs and Influence Everyone on Instagram

Boston Magazine: How to Sell Drugs and Influence Everyone on Instagram. “Who knew that Instagram was one of the world’s largest open-air drug markets? The true tale of a bodybuilder from Boston’s ’burbs turned social media influencer who built an illicit empire—one outrageous post at a time.” A very long but fascinating read.

Bangkok Post: Facebook and other social media a boon for drug dealers, study finds

Bangkok Post: Facebook and other social media a boon for drug dealers, study finds. “Online social networks are now popular channels for the sale of illicit drugs, a forum heard last week. The findings of research conducted on the subject were released at a panel discussion titled ‘Narcotics Market and Online Crimes’ attended by representatives of the Office of the Narcotics Control Board and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC).”

The New York Times: Dark Web Drug Sellers Dodge Police Crackdowns

The New York Times: Dark Web Drug Sellers Dodge Police Crackdowns. “Authorities in the United States and Europe recently staged a wide-ranging crackdown on online drug markets, taking down Wall Street Market and Valhalla, two of the largest drug markets on the so-called dark web. Yet the desire to score drugs from the comfort of home and to make money from selling those drugs appears for many to be stronger than the fear of getting arrested.”

The Verge: The golden age of dark web drug markets is over

The Verge: The golden age of dark web drug markets is over. “In July 2017, federal agents took down the Alphabay marketplace, then one of the largest and most profitable sources for drugs on the dark web. At the time, it seemed like a messy end to the string of dark net takedowns that started with the Silk Road. But more than a year and a half after the takedown, federal agents are still making arrests in Alphabay cases, chasing down dealers who sold drugs through the site.”

Neowin: Major dark web drug suppliers voluntarily ban sales of deadly drug

Neowin: Major dark web drug suppliers voluntarily ban sales of deadly drug. “The UK’s National Crime Agency has announced that several major drug suppliers on the dark web have decided to voluntarily ban the sale of the deadly drug fentanyl, a synthetic opioid, due to the danger it poses. The sellers decided to pull the product off their dark websites as it could cause fatalities which they believe would cause them to receive more attention from the police.”

Fortune: Dealers Are Using Social Media to Sell Illegal Drugs — And Getting Away With It

Fortune: Dealers Are Using Social Media to Sell Illegal Drugs — And Getting Away With It. “The social platforms can’t keep up with their own algorithms, which actively promote the problematic content once users express interest by following a drug dealer or liking a drug-related image, according to the report. The system is meant to advertise accounts and provide new content personalized to the user’s interests, but this can backfire when the interests are illegal.”

TechCrunch: Facebook cracks down on opioid dealers after years of neglect

TechCrunch: Facebook cracks down on opioid dealers after years of neglect . “Facebook’s role in the opioid crisis could become another scandal following yesterday’s release of harrowing new statistics from the Center for Disease Control. It estimated there were nearly 30,000 synthetic opioid overdose deaths in the U.S. in 2017, up from roughly 20,000 the year before. When recreational drugs like Xanax and OxyContin are adulterated with the more powerful synthetic opioid Fentanyl, the misdosage can prove fatal. Xanax, OxyContin and other pain killers are often bought online, with dealers promoting themselves on social media including Facebook.”

Vice: Drug Dealers on Facebook Are Targeting People With Addiction

Vice: Drug Dealers on Facebook Are Targeting People With Addiction. “Last year, the US government celebrated the takedown of darknet (the underground and far less traceable version of the web) drug sales site AlphaBay. It was an effort the FBI described as ‘one of the most sophisticated and coordinated efforts to date on the part of law enforcement across the globe.’ Attorney General Jeff Sessions has pledged to include concentrated efforts related to online drug sales in his controversial, renewed war on drugs. But online drug sales are now springing up in a much less covert, and far more surprising, forum: Facebook.”

BBC News: How WhatsApp has helped heroin become Mozambique’s second biggest export

BBC News: How WhatsApp has helped heroin become Mozambique’s second biggest export. “As many as 40 tonnes of heroin could be passing through Mozambique every year, making it the country’s second biggest export, in a trade that is boosted by the use of mobile phone apps, writes Mozambique analyst Joseph Hanlon.”

Dragonfly: Opiate Addiction and Treatment Resources from the National Library of Medicine

Dragonfly: Opiate Addiction and Treatment Resources from the National Library of Medicine. “In response to the growing heroin epidemic in the United States, the National Library of Medicine’s Specialized Information Services has created a portal to provide resources and information on prescribing, overdose, medication-assisted treatment, and recovery.”