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Feds Shut Down Tor-Using Narcotics Store

Unknown Lamer posted more than 2 years ago | from the conspiracy-and-subterfuge dept.

The Courts 301

Fluffeh writes "Federal authorities have arrested eight men accused of distributing more than $1 million worth of LSD, ecstasy, and other narcotics with an online storefront called 'The Farmer's Market' that used the Tor anonymity service to mask their Internet addresses. Prosecutors said in a press release that the charges were the result of a two-year investigation led by agents of the Drug Enforcement Administration's Los Angeles field division. 'Operation Adam Bomb, ' as the investigation was dubbed, also involved law enforcement agents from several U.S. states and several countries, including Colombia, the Netherlands, and Scotland. The arrests come about a year after Gawker documented the existence of Silk Road, an online narcotics storefront that was available only to Tor users. The site sold LSD, Afghani hashish, tar heroin and other controlled substances and allowed customers to pay using the virtual currency known as Bitcoin."

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301 comments

Headline = Misleading (4, Insightful)

alphax45 (675119) | more than 2 years ago | (#39708825)

Why does Slashdot even bother to hire and pay an editor? They clearly don't do anything. That headline is so misleading. They didn't shut down the entire Tor network, they shut down a store that was USING the Tor network. Fix it!

Re:Headline = Misleading (4, Interesting)

SendBot (29932) | more than 2 years ago | (#39708841)

AGREED - I was jarred by this headline, then followed it with a heavy groan when I realized what was actually meant.

Say what you mean, mean what you say...

Re:Headline = Misleading (3, Informative)

Fluffeh (1273756) | more than 2 years ago | (#39708981)

Sorry chaps, I wrote the headline when I submitted it, it was before I had a coffee this morning my time. The heading is ambiguous and I will endevour to make sure that my headlines are no more so in the future.

Re:Headline = Misleading (4, Funny)

sheehaje (240093) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709011)

You should be ashamed... Because I really was wondering how using a narcotics store could shut down Tor.

Hyphen! (4, Informative)

Oxford_Comma_Lover (1679530) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709019)

This is what hyphens are for.

Re:Hyphen! (5, Funny)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709173)

This is what hyphens are for.

You mean they could have shut down Tor using hyphens?

Re:Hyphen! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39709221)

If I only had mod points, that'd be +2, Funny.

Re:Hyphen! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39709231)

Them fancy grammaticals is dangerous little buggers.

Re:Hyphen! (4, Insightful)

Fluffeh (1273756) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709243)

If it helps, it was brought up during the submission phase of the post:

http://slashdot.org/submission/2025187/feds-shut-down-tor-using-narcotics-store [slashdot.org] .

That was a solid ten to twelve hours before it was posted, I had hoped that it might be fixed on posting. Now, please, lets move on from the poor hyphenation, and get back to the article at hand shall we? I am sure it has much more interest to the community at large compared to my poor grammar. The last reason I submitted this was to start a (at this time) thirty post thread on the ambiguity of how the headline can be read or misread.

Re:Hyphen! (1)

omnichad (1198475) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709309)

The URL version of the headline has hyphens...unfortunately a few too many.

Re:Headline = Misleading (1)

JockTroll (996521) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709097)

Not enough. You have failed for the last time. Try to hold on to what little honour you may have left, and commit suicide NOW.

Re:Headline = Misleading (3, Insightful)

AmiMoJo (196126) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709159)

You have illustrated exactly why we have editors - so that a second pair of eyes can check your work, and hopefully one of you will have had your morning coffee.

Re:Headline = Misleading (1)

azalin (67640) | more than 2 years ago | (#39708997)

It would have made some really interesting reading though. Not that I have any idea in what part of the TOR protocol the would be used as an attack vector.

Re:Headline = Misleading (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39708859)

I was just wondering how they used a store to shut down the network.

Re:Headline = Misleading (4, Insightful)

DahGhostfacedFiddlah (470393) | more than 2 years ago | (#39708871)

It's obviously just a Case Of The Missing Hyphen. The headline should read "Tor-Using Narcotics Store".

Perfectly clear (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39708883)

Obviously, the feds used a narcotics store to shut down Tor.

Re:Headline = Misleading (1, Flamebait)

Nidi62 (1525137) | more than 2 years ago | (#39708885)

Where does the headline say they shut down Tor? THe only way you could come to that conclusion with this headline is by reading that the Feds used a narcotics store to shut down the Tor network. Otherwise it clearly reads that the feds shut down a narcotics store that uses Tor. This is more a case of bad reading comprehension than poor editing.

Re:Headline = Misleading (1)

jkflying (2190798) | more than 2 years ago | (#39708901)

It could have been worded better. Such as "Feds Shut Down Tor-obscured Narcotics Store"

Re:Headline = Misleading (2)

Nidi62 (1525137) | more than 2 years ago | (#39708965)

It's true that I could have been worded better, yes, but I've seen much worse-worded headlines on news sites such as CNN. But the context of the headline should have overcome any ambiguity in the title (how likely is it that the Feds would use a narcotics-selling website to shut down Tor, vs the Feds shutting down a narcotics-selling website that was using Tor?) I would have figured that most people reading slashdot (especially those that speak English as a second language) would read based more on contextual clues than literal meaning of the sentence.

Re:Headline = Misleading (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39709167)

This is slashdot! We don't RTFA, we don't RTFS and we don't RTFH! And in the rare cases where we do read the article, the summary or the headline, we make damn sure we misunderstand it.

Re:Headline = Misleading (1)

RulerOf (975607) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709321)

This is slashdot! We don't RTFA, we don't RTFS and we don't RTFH! And in the rare cases where we do read the article, the summary or the headline, we make damn sure we misunderstand it.

Hear, hear!

...what are we talking about again?

Re:Headline = Misleading (1)

gorzek (647352) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709245)

Or: "Tor-based Narcotics Store Shut Down by Feds"

Re:Headline = Misleading (0)

HJED (1304957) | more than 2 years ago | (#39708957)

I think its actually supposed to mean "Fed showdown a narcotics shop, using tor". However I originally read it the same as the GP.

Re:Headline = Misleading (1)

agentgonzo (1026204) | more than 2 years ago | (#39708991)

That implies that the Feds used Tor to shut down a narcotics store, which is not what is meant. It is meant that there was a narcotics store that used Tor that the Feds have now shut down.

Re:Headline = Misleading (1, Insightful)

Richard_at_work (517087) | more than 2 years ago | (#39708959)

You don't need bad reading comprehension to come to the other conclusion, it's a poorly phased head line without the hyphen.

Re:Headline = Misleading (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39709195)

it's a poorly phased head line

That's what happens when you leave them set on stun.

Re:Headline = Misleading (1)

geminidomino (614729) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709057)

Where does the headline say they shut down Tor? THe only way you could come to that conclusion with this headline is by reading that the Feds used a narcotics store to shut down the Tor network.

"Feds shutdown Tor..." Right there. And that IS how they're saying they parsed it.

You're wrong. It's bad editing, since there should have been a hyphen between "Tor" and "using".

If what is supposed to be a straightforward sentence is structured such that the reader responds "What the fuck...?" on the first parsing, it's badly structured.

Re:Headline = Misleading (2)

Fnord666 (889225) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709133)

Where does the headline say they shut down Tor? THe only way you could come to that conclusion with this headline is by reading that the Feds used a narcotics store to shut down the Tor network. Otherwise it clearly reads that the feds shut down a narcotics store that uses Tor. This is more a case of bad reading comprehension than poor editing.

Really? Do you know the difference between a direct object and a preposition in a sentence? As worded the direct object in the sentence is Tor. What was meant was that the Feds shut down a narcotics store. What was said was that the Feds shut down Tor. The only reading comprehension fail is yours.

Re:Headline = Misleading (1, Informative)

nchase (798055) | more than 2 years ago | (#39708887)

it should be "Tor-Using".

Re:Headline = Misleading (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39708909)

No, they shut down tor!
But they used a store to do it.
No idea how that works.

Re:Headline = Misleading (1)

Chrisq (894406) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709017)

No, they shut down tor! But they used a store to do it. No idea how that works.

Must have been an App Store

Re:Headline = Misleading (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39709023)

Several years ago I added the /. widget to my igoogle. I really enjoyed the tidbits of techo that showed up on a daily basis. Seems these days the majority of articles are trumped up misleading bs items or vague flamebait. It's sad /. has devolved to the point it has the same value as the Metro.co.uk widget that also sits on my igoogle. The only thing missing is the "Cute Alert" and adds.

Re:Headline = Misleading (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39709039)

Why does Slashdot even bother to hire and pay an editor? They clearly don't do anything. That headline is so misleading. They didn't shut down the entire Tor network, they shut down a store that was USING the Tor network. Fix it!

More to the point, at what point does a routine drug bust become "news for nerds"? Because the dealers were using a Tor and bitcoin for their distribution?

If there were holes in Tor and/or Bitcoin that allowed the authorities to gain access, then perhaps it's news for nerds. Perhaps. But no, this is just a routine drug bust.

Next week, we'll be told that some mafioso has been arrested. Oh and by the way, he had a gmail account.

Re:Headline = Misleading (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39709091)

Why does Slashdot even bother to hire and pay an editor? They clearly don't do anything. That headline is so misleading. They didn't shut down the entire Tor network, they shut down a store that was USING the Tor network. Fix it!

This title is almost more annoying than "AYBABTU".

Re:Headline = Misleading (5, Funny)

nozzo (851371) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709119)

wow all this posting over a missing hyphen. If only we could turn our energetic posting into solving cold-fusion then the world would be a happier place. Come to think of it we can skip the cold-fusion and just use the hot air on this forum. Don't mark me Troll - I'm a nice person!

Re:Headline = Misleading (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39709183)

At first, I misread it as "Feds Shut Down For Using Narcotics Store". That actually made more sense than saying they shut down Tor.

Re:Headline = Misleading (-1)

Malc (1751) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709239)

They used a Narcotics Store to shut-down Tor? Wow.

Re:Headline = Misleading (1)

who_stole_my_kidneys (1956012) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709323)

was wondering who they shutdown the entire Tor service. guess the wrote a misleading title to get you to read the article.

Bad title (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39708829)

Hyphenation is your friend. The title is extremely misleading. "Feds Shut Down Tor-Using Narcotics Store".

Re:Bad title (3, Informative)

Dark$ide (732508) | more than 2 years ago | (#39708911)

Hyphenation is your friend. The title is extremely misleading. "Feds Shut Down Tor-Using Narcotics Store".

Real writers re-write to avoid the problem: "Feds shut down narcotics store that had been a TOR user". But you're right the standard of English grammar used today leaves a lot to be desired. Samuel Johnson, the Merriams and Noah Webster can be heard spinning at very high revolutions.

Re:Bad title (2)

AC-x (735297) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709007)

Real writers re-write to avoid the problem: "Feds shut down narcotics store that had been a TOR user".

Or even the more catchy "Feds shut down Tor-based narcotics store"

Shut down? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39708837)

Where does it say Tor was shutdown because of this bust? The title seem to indicate so..

Re:Shut down? (1)

91degrees (207121) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709135)

Ambiguous headline. A hyphen would have helped, but so would rearranging the headline.

Read as "Tor-using narcotics store shut down by Feds".

first (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39708843)

most confusing title ever

Finally (5, Funny)

royallthefourth (1564389) | more than 2 years ago | (#39708847)

Someone's finally found a good reason to use bitcoin

Re:Finally (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39708915)

I thought that was amazing too. I thought bitcoin was entirely useless. I had no idea you could buy anything with it.

Re:Finally (0)

Shavano (2541114) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709095)

Apparently in this case it sounds like it was used for money laundering but not in a way sophisticated enough to fool the feds.

Nope (5, Interesting)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 2 years ago | (#39708941)

  1. Anonymous payment systems are not good because they let you evade the government, they are good because they protect spenders and merchants from various types of fraud.
  2. A large drug dealing operation that uses Bitcoin is no better off than one which uses cash. The drug dealers still need to pay their rent and buy their groceries, and they cannot do that with Bitcoin. All the DEA would have to do is to watch Bitcoin exchanges to gather lists of suspects.
  3. You still need to ship the drugs, so you are still going leave a trail that points to you.

Re:Nope (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39709005)

You *can* pay rent with Bitcoin [bitcointalk.org] if you move to Vegas.

Re:Finally (1)

azalin (67640) | more than 2 years ago | (#39708969)

That's exactly what I thought. I mean slashdot had many stories about bitcoins getting mined or stolen but this is the first time I remember bitcoins actually being used to purchase real world goods in an online shop. Looks like they aren't hypeware after all.

Re:Finally (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39709093)

this is the first time I remember bitcoins actually being used to purchase real world goods in an online shop/i>

Then you're an idiot. Or sadly ignorant.

https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Trade [bitcoin.it]

2 Currency exchanges

        2.1 Real-time Trading
        2.2 Fixed rate
        2.3 Gift/Debit Cards
        2.4 Precious & Base Metals/Coins
        2.5 Local/In-Hand Exchanges
        2.6 SMS/Phone billing

3 Bitcoin eWallets

        3.1 Bitcoin Banking and Ewallets

4 Bitcoin payment systems
5 Internet & Mobile services

        5.1 Bitcoin-related
        5.2 Connectivity
        5.3 Design
                5.3.1 Creative
                5.3.2 Web
                5.3.3 Art
        5.4 Web Hosting
        5.5 Dedicated/Virtual Server Hosting
        5.6 Domain Name and DNS Hosting
        5.7 E-Mail
        5.8 VoIP/SMS
        5.9 Security Services
        5.10 Mobile App Development
        5.11 Productivity
        5.12 Other

6 Online products

        6.1 Cloud Providers and Services
        6.2 Software
        6.3 Education-related Software
        6.4 Games
        6.5 Graphic design
        6.6 File sharing
        6.7 Music
        6.8 Virtual Art
        6.9 Digital Downloads
        6.10 Entertainment/Books/Magazines
        6.11 Social Media/Aggregators

7 Material / Physical Products

        7.1 Superstores
        7.2 Games
        7.3 Classified
        7.4 Marketplaces
        7.5 Auction sites
        7.6 Gift Cards
        7.7 Toys, Games and Hobbies
        7.8 Clothing and accessories
        7.9 Home
        7.10 Electronics
        7.11 Consumable
        7.12 Books
        7.13 Music
        7.14 Art and Artwork
                7.14.1 Collage / Mixed Media
                7.14.2 Comics
                7.14.3 Paintings
                7.14.4 Photography
                7.14.5 Post cards
        7.15 Art Production
                7.15.1 Musical Instruments
                7.15.2 Painting
        7.16 Gift articles
        7.17 Craftwork
        7.18 Collectables
        7.19 Car Accessories
        7.20 Bitcoin promotional articles
        7.21 Game accessories
        7.22 Beauty products
        7.23 Chemicals
        7.24 Precision mechanics
        7.25 Printing
        7.26 Manufacturing
        7.27 Trading-related Information and Services
        7.28 Children
        7.29 Flags
        7.30 Health and Fitness
        7.31 Other

8 Professional services

        8.1 Job Boards
        8.2 Creative services
        8.3 Consulting
        8.4 Legal Services
        8.5 Technical support
        8.6 Repair and Maintenance Services
        8.7 Software
        8.8 Web Development
        8.9 Other

9 Commerce and community

        9.1 Charity
        9.2 Web Communities
        9.3 Financial Services
        9.4 Information services
        9.5 Advertising
        9.6 Political Activism

10 Travel / Tourism / Leisure

        10.1 Airfare/Bus/Rail Tickets
        10.2 Restaurants and cafes
        10.3 Bed and Breakfast
        10.4 Hostels
        10.5 Hotels
        10.6 Travel Companies
        10.7 Sports

Re:Finally (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39708993)

When Silk Road hit the mainstream media, Bitcoin went from sub-$1 per BTC to $30+ per BTC. It was basically what caused the big bubble. You could watch the trade graph on MagicTheGatheringOnlineExchange -- sorry, "Mt. Gox" -- and the prices would bump up on the weekends as everyone turned dollars into BTC to buy drugs, and then shot back down on Monday when the dealers turned them back into dollars.

Re:Finally (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39709025)

This is drugs for nerds, the stuff and matter.

Re:Finally (2, Insightful)

mysidia (191772) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709249)

Unfortunately it's not a legitimate use of bitcoin. It's the kind of use that will be at risk of getting bitcoin banned, if someone doesn't popularize a legitimate reason for using bitcoin soon.

More stores will spring up (1)

GeneralTurgidson (2464452) | more than 2 years ago | (#39708851)

Clearly there is a market for this, and no amount of government bullying will stop it.

Read between the lines (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39708935)

The last thing government wants is to "solve" the "problem" and eliminate the black market. After all, they created the black market. They created it specifically to justify the expansion of their business (i.e. by "solving" the "problems" which they themselves created). Notice that I quite deliberately called government a business.

If you need proof, simply follow the money. Prohibition has justified hundreds of billions in spending, and the kicker is that the "tougher" they get (i.e. the more they spend), the more sophisticated the black market becomes, and therefore the more money they need to "solve" the "problem". It's a cycle of WIN for government, and a cycle of LOSE for everyone else (at least the ones who can see through the smokescreen and admit the truth).

When it comes to government, ALWAYS follow the money before listening to a word they say.

Re:Read between the lines (1)

bloodymad (829659) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709031)

Why would it be a "win" for the government to have to spend a lot of money?

Re:Read between the lines (5, Insightful)

RadioElectric (1060098) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709171)

Because of who gets the money that the government spends.

Re:Read between the lines (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39709203)

The harder the problem, the more people they need.

The more people they need, the more managers are needed to manage. The more managers, the more upper level managers, etc.

If you want to get promoted in the DEA, it is much easier to create a department to manage than to wait for somebody to retire.

Re:Read between the lines (3, Informative)

thej1nx (763573) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709229)

Kickbacks. If you as a govt official/senator/president/etc, spend govt. money(on pretext of "wars") to benefit your friends in the industries, you get a golden parachute and get a guaranteed place on the board of directors of some company with a hefty salary, and/or get nominated VP/Chairperson to more openly do your shilling and pimping. If you are a politician with any ambition, you get your next political campaign fully financed, as way of thanks.

If you have laws that pretty much strictly punish the govt. officials for benefiting in this manner, once they leave their jobs, you will find plenty of "wars" and problems out-right disappearing.

More prisons will spring up (0)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709033)

The point of the war on drugs is to imprison people, create excuses for violating civil rights, militarize the police, and fatten corporate profits (especially pharmaceuticals, light arms producers, and prison operators). Nobody wants it to stop; it would not be possible for it to stop even if we tried, because human beings use drugs, period. People drink tea, people use tobacco, people take antihistamines, people drink alcohol, and yes, people smoke marijuana, snort cocaine, and use LSD. If everyone stopped using illegal drugs, we would just make more drugs illegal to continue the arrests.

Re:More prisons will spring up (1)

mysidia (191772) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709281)

Yep. And pretty soon ISPs will be asked to identify customers using Tor at this rate.

Utilizing Tor will become probable cause for a search and seizure of all interesting data processing devices, in order to search for evidence of criminal wrongdoing.

The Hyphen is your friend (-1, Redundant)

tverbeek (457094) | more than 2 years ago | (#39708873)

Note the difference between: "Feds Shut Down Tor Using Narcotics Store" and "Feds Shut Down Tor-Using Narcotics Store".

(In the first headline, the feds have used a narcotics store to shut down Tor. In the second, the feds have shut down a narcotics store that uses Tor.)

When using an adjective that consists of multiple words (a.k.a. a multiple-word adjective), hyphens connecting those words make the meaning much clearer.

Re:The Hyphen is your friend (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39708907)

Reminds me of "The importance of commas".

"Lets eat, Grandpa!" and "Let's eat Grandpa!"

A comma makes the difference between a family supper and... a family supper. Hmmm...

Re:The Hyphen is your friend (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39708927)

A better phrase might be, having family over for supper ... and having family for supper.

Re:The Hyphen is your friend (3, Funny)

ledow (319597) | more than 2 years ago | (#39708953)

The reverse classic is obviously

Panda: Eats, shoots and leaves.

Putting commas in without thinking about them can be just as bad as leaving them out. Thus they *are* a vital part of communication.

what the hell... (1)

ticktickboom (1054594) | more than 2 years ago | (#39708897)

Feds Shut Down Tor Using Narcotics Store http://t.co/HqsOjzQx [t.co] that saysd the feds have shut down the tor network using their narcotics storage or a narcotics storefront. i used to enjoy /. the headlines were slightly offbeat, but now their a complete fabrication. the onion is more straight forward than this crap...

I mis read it anyway.... (5, Funny)

trancemission (823050) | more than 2 years ago | (#39708921)

I first read it as:

Feds Shut Down For Using Narcotics Store.

Hooray I thought.

I should lay off the Narcotics......

Re:I mis read it anyway.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39708973)

I read the same thing. I thought some federal agents had been caught using/selling their confiscated drugs.

Narcotics? (1)

rover42 (2606651) | more than 2 years ago | (#39708945)

It's not just the headline that is odd. The stroy itself has "more than $1 million worth of LSD, ecstasy, and other narcotics". Neither LSD nor ecstacy is a narcotic, so this is obviously nonsense. If they had said "other drugs" or "other controlled substances", that would have made some sense to me, though I suspect a lawyer might have a more recise meaning for "controlled substabce".

Propaganda (2)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 2 years ago | (#39708979)

"Narcotics" sounds scary, so we should call all drugs narcotics! This is not a new propaganda strategy; marijuana was first called a narcotic in the 1930s during the hearings on banning the drug.

Re:Narcotics? (1)

arisvega (1414195) | more than 2 years ago | (#39708995)

Drugs are bad, m'kay?

Re:Narcotics? (1)

Shavano (2541114) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709223)

Heroin is though. It seems that all illegal drugs are often called "narcotics" even though that word has a specific meaning that isnt related to whether it is legal.

Unfortunately the misuse of language extends well beyond the headline. I wouldn't blame law enforcement for bad use of language. Often the first time I see a new malapropism is in the press.

LSD and extasy (1)

blind biker (1066130) | more than 2 years ago | (#39708971)

LSD and extasy (i.e. MDMA) are two of the least addictive drugs. In fact, LSD isn't addictive at all. And the side effects are very mild to none in either case.

But yeah, good job federal agents of the USA, your work is making the world a better place.

Re:LSD and extasy (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39709003)

Yep, ask a tobacco smoker and he will tell you that tobacco isn't addictive at all and he can stop at any time. News at 11.

Re:LSD and extasy (5, Informative)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709069)

Except that scientists have studied LSD, for decades, and there has been little evidence of people forming dependences on it. This is in stark contrast to the three most popular legal drugs: caffeine, tobacco, and alcohol.

Re:LSD and extasy (2)

blind biker (1066130) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709089)

To be precise, caffeine forms a light dependency, but tobacco and alcohol both create strong physical dependencies which require heroic efforts to overcome.

Re:LSD and extasy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39709157)

Except that scientists have studied LSD, for decades, and there has been little evidence of people forming dependences on it.

Reference please?

Re:LSD and extasy (5, Informative)

Iskender (1040286) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709261)

Reference please?

http://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/infofacts/hallucinogens-lsd-peyote-psilocybin-pcp [drugabuse.gov]

Most users of LSD voluntarily decrease or stop its use over time. LSD is not considered an addictive drug since it does not produce compulsive drug-seeking behavior. However, LSD does produce tolerance, so some users who take the drug repeatedly must take progressively higher doses to achieve the state of intoxication that they had previously achieved.

I don't have the time to dig up a scientific paper but the article does have sources at the end.

Re:LSD and extasy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39709297)

thanks

Re:LSD and extasy (2)

c0lo (1497653) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709165)

Somebody [wikiquote.org] said it best:

It's easy to quit smoking. I've done it hundreds of times.

Re:LSD and extasy (1)

mbone (558574) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709009)

And, neither one is a narcotic at all, at least from a medical standpoint.

Finally! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39709001)

Now we've won the war on drugs right?

Or did we just expand it... Cyber-drugs! We need more money, more laws, more power, more people or the evil cyber-drugdealers will kill your kids!

They're not drug dealers, they're job creators (5, Funny)

jholyhead (2505574) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709015)

Just another example of the job killing regulations enacted by the Obama administration. When will the federal government get out of the way of small business owners and job creators?

As usual, no technical details (5, Interesting)

BenEnglishAtHome (449670) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709043)

From the article, emphasis mine:

...the operators used software provided by the TOR Project that makes it virtually impossible to track the activities of users' IP addresses. The alleged conspirators also used IP anonymizers and covert currency transactions to cover their tracks. The indictment, which cited e-mails sent among the men dating back to 2006, didn't say how investigators managed to infiltrate the site or link it to the individuals accused of running it.

I'm willing to bet that money transfers and the transfer of goods sold are still far more discoverable than individual Tor users but any assurances of that would certainly be welcome. I hope the Tor Project will be forthcoming with some as soon as some technically useful info is available.

Re:As usual, no technical details (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39709107)

The US government has been able to track people through Tor for years now. Anyone who really thinks they are anonymous on Tor are fooling themselves.

Re:As usual, no technical details (4, Insightful)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709143)

I hope the Tor Project will be forthcoming with some as soon as some technically useful info is available.

They might not even know. There are quite a few people in the computer security community who keep their work on breaking the security of systems like Tor a secret, and only tell US law enforcement about their results. I have met such people, and they are generally well-meaning -- they really do believe that they are helping to catch dangerous criminals (and they can cite cases where that happened, usually child sex abuse cases).

Unfortunately, because such researchers believe that fixing these problems will help "the enemy," they generally refuse to disclose details. One of the common themes is variations on fingerprinting attacks, where you communicate with your target over Tor but use a covert channel that can be used to distinguish your target from other Tor users. These sorts of attacks usually involve narrowing down the geographic area where your target is, but for attacking a drug dealing operation that is not hard to do -- just look at where packages from the operation are coming from.

Re:As usual, no technical details (3, Insightful)

edave22 (2601393) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709205)

From the article, emphasis mine:

...the operators used software provided by the TOR Project that makes it virtually impossible to track the activities of users' IP addresses. The alleged conspirators also used IP anonymizers and covert currency transactions to cover their tracks. The indictment, which cited e-mails sent among the men dating back to 2006, didn't say how investigators managed to infiltrate the site or link it to the individuals accused of running it.

I'm willing to bet that money transfers and the transfer of goods sold are still far more discoverable than individual Tor users but any assurances of that would certainly be welcome. I hope the Tor Project will be forthcoming with some as soon as some technically useful info is available.

They use bitcoin. The security reaches only as far as bitcoins security. You can hide behind an IP in the middle of the red sea if you wanted. If your bitcoin transaction can be tracked, you bet your ass you can be tracked as well.

Thank God they stopped LSD! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39709051)

On LSD side we have:
Steve Jobs, Jimi Hendrix, Aldous Huxley, Francis Crick (DNA), Kary Mullis (PCR), Jay Miner (Atari & Amiga) & the BSD unix developers

On the alcohol side:
The crews at Enron, Bear-Stearns and the whole Gulf War command. 40,000 deaths a year from traffic accidents. Who can even guess how many rapes and assaults?

handful of heros still holding down fed steps nyc (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39709071)

http://www.ustream.tv/occupiedair

Example proves what many have long suspected... (4, Interesting)

dryriver (1010635) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709077)

That none of the various "anonimizer" services out there, from HotSpotShield to Tor, actually give you any kind of tangible identity protection in the "real world" of the current internet. Hell, maybe these services were even setup expressly to lure people seeking "increased anonimity" for various reasons to make use of one these services, so it becomes that much easier to identify, tag, track & monitor them. Maybe some or all of these services have been electronically monitored 24/7 from the day they were born, but we are still told, over and over, and quite falsely, that these services magically "hide your identity" and give you some "online privacy"... In the increasingly Orwellian online and offline world we live in, precisely that being done by the powers-that-be would make a lot of sense, no? Tell all sorts of gullible internet users that using "Service X" magically "hides your identity on the internet", then monitor precisely that service 24/7, to get your hands on the data of a subgroup of internet users who seek to be "more anonymous" online. ... If your organizational mantra consists of "People who try to hide themselves online must have something important to hide, and must be monitored carefully", then you would to precisely that, no? You'd set up a dozen or so "anonimity services" under a variety of different names and front companies, then monitor the f__k out of the people who use those services, on an around-the-clock basis.

Re:Example proves what many have long suspected... (5, Insightful)

ledow (319597) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709111)

"The indictment, which cited e-mails sent among the men dating back to 2006, didn't say how investigators managed to infiltrate the site or link it to the individuals accused of running it."

For all you know, they packaged up the drugs without wearing gloves and their fingerprints were in a database somewhere, and they then posted them (with a nice local postmark) to a Fed posing as a customer (how would you know? Their customer will be just as anonymous). Somehow you had to get a physical product to someone else - and that's probably the weak-point. Hell, they could have just offered to drop it off on a street corner as a "one-off" delivery and got caught that way, you have no idea.

It's then only a small step and the simple matter of suspecting they may be a vast drug operation in place, finding out anything you can from the drugs collected by similar methods and narrowing down until you can just tap someone's whole Internet connection (Tor provides ANONYMITY, not SECURITY). Which they seem to have because they have emails of these people talking to each other.

Or maybe they just talked their way into an IRC channel or something that these guys used. You have absolutely no idea how they were caught, or whether they were just incredibly thick.

Using a tool badly does not mean the tool is broken.

Re:Example proves what many have long suspected... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39709115)

You're right, the fact that these people were shipping illegal drugs around the country had nothing to do with them being caught. Oh...wait a minute..

Re:Example proves what many have long suspected... (4, Informative)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709199)

That none of the various "anonimizer" services out there, from HotSpotShield to Tor, actually give you any kind of tangible identity protection in the "real world" of the current internet

Except that these are not the be-all and end-all of anonymity systems. The anonymous remailer system is much more secure than Tor, and is not vulnerable to the sort of fingerprinting attacks that Tor is vulnerable to. Intelligence agencies have known for decades that perfect receiver anonymity is possible: broadcast an encrypted message (online, this is alt.anonymous.messages on Usenet, or other similar media).

The problem is that people want to be able to do things in real-time. People are not content to wait 48+ hours to receive a message. People are generally willing to sacrifice some security to get speed and convenience, and thus Tor is the most popular strong anonymity system out there.

Re:Example proves what many have long suspected... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39709227)

Everyone knew as well that people using sky masks are up to no good. They cover enough part of the face to commit crimes and not be recognized.

Yes, you can pick anything to commit a crime, from pantyhose to tor. Which doesn't necessarily means that anyone using the service (or wearing a sky mask) is guilty.

Perhaps Not Relevant to Silk Road (1)

SaroDarksbane (1784314) | more than 2 years ago | (#39709147)

Given the nature of Bitcoin, the feds would probably have to rely on tracking the shipments of illicit goods back to their source to try and bust Silk Road. But as I understand it, Silk Road does not sell the drugs themselves; they simply act as an eBay-like service for others to sell their drugs. So even if the feds do find the initial source of a package, the most they've accomplished is to remove one seller from Silk Road, and not the site itself.

Operation Adam Bomb (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39709197)

They can't spell either.

end justifies means (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39709253)

Many ISPs dropped USENET after several state's AG decide it was a haven for kiddie porn, nearly crippling it.

Megaupload was shutdown because SOME files on it were considered pirate files.

The idea that the government might shutdown other services on the internet if only because some of the activity on that service is illegal doesn't seem so far fetched.

They are the government. They are legion. They may or may not remember but they don't care. They don't forgive even if they are wrong. Expect them.

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