Feeds

4 Brits cuffed after shutdown of internet drug shop Silk Road

Blighty's National Crime Agency on arrests of first UK suspects: 'Many more to come'

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

British cops have nabbed four men in connection with the shutdown of the Silk Road internet drug shop. They said they expect to arrest more in the coming weeks as they tighten the net on the dark web's illicit marketplaces.

Police from Blighty's newly launched National Crime Agency said they had worked with US law enforcement to identify “significant users”. They said they had cuffed four people – a man in his 50s from Devon and three other men in their twenties who were based in Manchester – just a few hours after the collapse of the Silk Road.

Keith Bristow, the NCA’s director general, warned potential crims that the dark web was no protection for drug dealers as the NCA promised to tackle the "threat" posed by online currencies.

He said: “It is impossible for criminals to completely erase their digital footprint. No matter how technology-savvy the offender, they will always make mistakes and this brings law enforcement closer to them.”

“These so-called hidden or anonymous online environments are a key priority for the National Crime Agency,” continued Bristow. “These latest arrests are just the start; there are many more to come.”

Police forces around the world are also targeting people they suspect of dealing drugs on the Silk Road. In Seattle, the Feds placed tracking devices on suspects' cars and claim to have watched a dealer and his female accomplice drop off drugs packages at post offices around the city.

FBI agents also attempted to seize 600,000 Bitcoins (£45.9m; $73.8m) from alleged Silk Road operator Ross Ulbricht, who was arrested last week in San Francisco, although reports suggest the g-men haven't been able to get their hands on the private key for Ulbricht's Bitcoin wallet.

Ulbricht has denied all charges against him.

Interestingly, an FBI spokesperson told Forbes the Feds have no idea what to do with the currency once they get their mitts on it. “This is kind of new to us. We will probably just liquidate them,” a spokeswoman told Forbes.

Any further operations are likely to rely on cross-border cooperation between British and American law enforcement agencies.

Andy Archibald, head of the NCA's national cyber crime unit, added: “This is only the start of a wider campaign for the NCA to tackle the ‘dark’ or ‘deep’ web and the criminals exploiting it.

“These criminal areas of the internet aren’t just selling drugs; it’s where fraud takes place, where the trafficking of people and goods is discussed, where child abuse images are exchanged and firearms are traded. Stopping this element of serious and organised crime will go a long way to protecting the public.” ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Facebook pays INFINITELY MORE UK corp tax than in 2012
Thanks for the £3k, Zuck. Doh! you're IN CREDIT. Guess not
DOUBLE BONK: Testy fanbois catch Apple Pay picking pockets
Users wail as tapcash transactions are duplicated
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
Google Glassholes are UNDATEABLE – HP exec
You need an emotional connection, says touchy-feely MD... We can do that
YARR! Pirates walk the plank: DMCA magnets sink in Google results
Spaffing copyrighted stuff over the web? No search ranking for you
In the next four weeks, 100 people will decide the future of the web
While America tucks into Thanksgiving turkey, the world will be taking over the net
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.