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Recently, a Joint Report Released an Investigation by Flashpoint
Chain analysis on the marketplace, which resides in the Dark web named Hydra made shocking discoveries that involved drug trafficking.
Hydra is a Russian-language market which is a big market for drugs and many other prohibited activities, made about a good $1.37 Billion in 2020. In 2015, when this marketplace started, it was known for selling narcotics, but as time passed, it excelled in other illegal activities like data of stolen credit cards, cyber crimes, fake bank currency, and many others.
The Annual transaction, which started from $9.4 Million in 2016, reached up to $1.37 Billion in 2020 with yearly growth. Russians use this market only, uses cryptocurrency, used by criminals who want to keep their secrecy while availing these illegal services.
It is also reported by Chain analysis and Flashpoint that there are some rules set by Hydra for their sellers. Withdrawal is only allowed after making 50 successful sales, with the E-wallet consisting of a $10,000 amount.
These changes benefitted Hydra more, as on other secretive forums, a new market has established where cybercriminals buy stable ranking seller accounts to enter the market with a good ranking.
Another interesting fact reported was that the running of this market remained untouched and un-attacked by competitors, and the only downtime recorded was in the early times of Covid-19 in March 2020.
In 2020, Hydra ranked as the major crypto currency crime market in eastern Europe, and Hydra’s monthly revenue reached its peak of over $100 Million in August 2020. The report also stated that Hydra has gained 624% yearly growth in the last 3 years which makes it more known in the Dark web market.
There’s more about this, for cybercriminals who don’t want to get identified while transacting, Hydra allows bitcoin to be converted into gift cards, physical cash in discreet areas and also prepaid debit cards to make it easier for criminals to interchange bitcoins.
The Researchers Who Investigated this Says that
“Other sectors are endangered due to the expansion of the trade of Hydra’s illegal activities” they also cautioned “though Hydra is expanding in other illegal services still drug market remains the strongest one. And if it continues to grow like this other cybercrimes will expand with it too.”
From Silk Road to DarkMarket, law enforcement agencies have closed these Dark Net markets, but Hydra is still operating with the trade of drugs and illegal services, at least for now.