Sheep Marketplace bitcoin site vanishes as the go-to replacement to Silk Road, a similar bazaar shuttered by the FBI in October. Now users of the site, which operated outside the law to begin with and dealt only in anonymous Bitcoins, fear it was a scam all along. Deep Web’ site, buyers could find drugs, guns, and even hit men. Buyers would put their Bitcoins into the marketplace, where sellers would withdraw them, with all the transactions moderated by the website.
Is your bank account under threat? Which is where the issue first arose. In the days before the site shut down, vendors suddenly found themselves unable to access the Bitcoins tied up in the site’s wallet. As they complained, reports RT, they found their comments suddenly yanked from the site’s forums. Buyers also began to see suspicious things in the time leading up to this possible scam. Some vendors, though not all, began to list their drugs and other goods at prices far lower than ever before. 1,000 a piece—as possible before taking the money and running.
On Sunday, visitors to the site found a note in place of the homepage that claimed a vendor called EBOOK101 had stolen from the site’s cache of Bitcoins. This vendor found bug in system and stole 5400 BTC,’ reads the brief note. Your money, our provisions, all was stolen. However, according to a post on Hacker News, a wallet of far more Bitcoins has been traced back to the site. Tor – short for The onion Router – is a seething matrix of encrypted websites that allows users to surf beneath the everyday internet with complete anonymity. It uses numerous layers of security and encryption to render users anonymous online.
Normally, file sharing and internet browsing activity can be tracked by law enforcement through each user’s unique IP address that can be traced back to an individual computer. The Tor network on the Deep Web hides the IP address and the activity of the user. Most of the Web’s information is buried far down on dynamically generated sites, unable to be found or seen by traditional search engines – sites or pages don’t exist until created as the result of a specific search. An Internet search is like dragging a net across the surface of the sea – a great deal of information is caught, but a majority is deep and therefore missed. 45 million, 39,918 in Bitcoins could now be in the hands of a those behind the site after scamming untold numbers of hopeful drug users and gun toters out of their hard earned virtual cash. Some, however, do seem to be seriously worried their money will never come. I am a large vendor on Sheep Marketplace, or I was until recently.
I sold hard drugs in reasonably large quantities. 90k locked up in the site. They have already threatened me with death. I have no doubt that they have killed beforeI am 26 and I don’t want to die. Whether this is a true story or not remains unclear. However, with no way to track what illicit money belongs to whom, it seems clear that no one will be getting their Bitcoins back even if the alleged thief ever gets caught. BITCOINS, MONEY IN A DIGITAL AGE – WHAT IS THE VIRTUAL CURRENCY?