Evolution Replaces Silk Road as New Online Drug Market

By Brent McCluskey 09/23/14

Though Silk Road 2.0 is up and running, other online drug marketplaces like Evolution are seeking to rule the dark web.

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While the Silk Road was successfully dismantled last year, a new black market drug bazaar has sprung up in its place and it has been taking the dark web by storm.

Evolution, which has grown markedly since its launch earlier this year, is sleeker, more secure, and more amoral than Silk Road. The dark web service also boasts more than 15,000 mostly illegal products, including firearms and a broad range of drugs. 

Silk Road creator Ross Ulbricht, who is currently incarcerated in New York, had no qualms selling illicit drugs to anyone willing to buy them, but refused to “allow the sale of anything that’s main purpose is to harm innocent people.” Evolution, on the other hand, has fewer restrictions, banning "child pornography, 'services related to murder/assassination/terrorism,' prostitution, ponzi schemes, and lotteries" but it does not prohibit sales of stolen credit cards or weapons.

Compared to other dark web operations, Evolution is allegedly more secure and is online a larger percentage of the time. Evolution’s Tor servers also afford lightning fast page-load times, a difficult feat given their web traffic is encrypted and bounced around the world.

TheFix.com recently reported on the commonplace nature of online drug purchases, noting that seizures of marijuana delivered via the postal service have risen 300% in the last ten years and that black market vendors are becoming increasingly bold.

Currently, Evolution offers weed, cocaine, heroin, and other drugs, and because law enforcement struggles to arrest these online offenders, black market sites don’t appear to be going anywhere soon.

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Brent McCluskey is a Social Media Editor at International Business Times as well as a Jedi with Sith tendencies.  He is also a reader of books, slayer of dragons, and level 80 mage.

“Yeah, I have a broad skill set. If I had to pick between being a Divergent or a wizard, I'd pick a wizard.”  His wizardness can be found on Twitter and Linkedin.