Woah: Silk Road is an
Internet narcotics market
. Visit the market via Tor
, pay in Bitcoins
and receive your LSD by mail! The Silk Road web site only exists as a Tor
, but you can sometimes see it (non-anonymously) via
. On the
public Internet, here's the founders' feedback thread on
I'm fascinated by how
it works. I'm going to quote their "About" page in full, because I'm
guessing it won't be online much longer.
Silk Road is an anonymous marketplace where you can buy and
sell without revealing who you are. We protect your identity through
every step of the process, from connecting to this site, to purchasing
your items, to finally receiving them.
Connecting to the site: Silk Road uses the Tor network to
anonymize all traffic to and from the site so no one can find out who we
are or who you are from your internet traffic. All traffic is encrypted
and relayed through Tor nodes accross the globe, each one not knowing
the origin or destination of the traffic. To learn more about the Tor
network, visit torproject.org.
Purchasing your items:
The currency used to buy stuff on Silk Road is called Bitcoin. Bitcoin
uses encryption and a system of peer-to-peer double checking to create a
completely digital currency. No personal information is associated with
your bitcoins at all, making them ideal for anonymous transactions.
Additionally, Silk Road employs a built-in tumbler that mixes all
incoming bitcoins through a series of dummy transactions before they
ever leave. Click here for instructions on how to get Bitcoins, or visit
Bitcoin.org to learn more.
Absolutely none of your personal information is ever required here.
However, an address WILL be needed to accept delivery of any physical
goods. Even so, it is stored encrypted, and is deleted as soon as your
transaction is complete, so there is no record of it. And, because Silk
Road is a Tor Hidden Service, the address remains encrypted within the
Tor network when it is transfered.
For more details about improving your anonymity and making purchases,
please read our buyers guide.
I'm particularly struck by their statement they provide a BitCoin
laundering service. I'd noticed
BitCoins didn't seem particularly anonymous, here's proof that someone
with a vested interest in real payment anonymity agrees.