Some Dark Web ‘Crackdowns’ Are Just Hot Air

Law enforcement agencies across the world are targeting the dark web. Whether that's through undercover buys of illegal weapons, or deploying malware to catch suspected pedophiles, cops have spent the past few years learning how to tackle criminals who make use of Tor hidden services.

But a theme has emerged throughout dark web crackdowns: Much of their presentation by law enforcement is little more than PR hype, designed to exaggerate the effectiveness of the operation, or how many agencies are actually involved.

In the most recent case, agencies from the US, UK, Australia, New Zealand, and a slew of European countries announced a selection of arrests, and that they had allegedly identified thousands of dark web users. One of the participating agencies was the Drug Enforcement Administration, according to a press release from US Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

But the DEA said it never took part, in response to a Freedom of Information request filed by Motherboard.

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