Silk Road, the "Amazon of Drugs," made headlines when it was shut down a few weeks ago by the government, which led to the arrest of its founder, Ross Ulbricht, and a few other sellers and buyers from around the globe.
Now, an anonymous person has relaunched the website as Silk Road 2.0 on the anonymous network Tor. The person has even gone as far as setting up a Twitter account that shares the same handle that Ulbricht used during his time as Silk Road's owner, Dread Pirate Roberts. Since the closure, there have been a handful of Tor sites that have tried to capitalize on the original Silk Road's fate, many of which we covered in our 6 Alternatives to Silk Road feature, but it seems like many of the old Silk Road members have already moved over to Silk Road 2.0. Membership to the site is invite-only, with original members being the ones sending out the invites (so if you're trying to newly hop on to this gravy train, you're going to need to get hooked up to do so.) The site has implemented a PGP encryption key to help with security, and Bitcoin is still the anonymous currency of choice. Reportedly, there are already 500 drug listings on Silk Road 2.0, and old members will also feel right at home since the site looks almost like a spitting image of the old one. But, when members sign in, now they're welcomed with a nice notification that celebrates the return of the marketplace, which also serves as a big "fuck you" to authorities:
There's no telling how long the site will be able to avoid the original's fate, but even if it's shut down, the dark Internet will adapt to its loss and another will certainly rise in its place. This is just part two of the series, friends.
Follow Jason Duaine Hahn on Twitter: @JasonDuaine