In May 2015, Ross Ulbricht was sentenced to life in prison for crimes he committed while running the black market site known as Silk Road on the dark web. During its three-year tenure, Silk Road was responsible for more than $1 billion worth of illegal transactions – primarily for illicit drugs – making it the largest underground market of its kind. In 2013, the F.B.I. shut down the site and shortly thereafter arrested Ulbricht for narcotics trafficking and other charges.
The dark web
Silk Road was part of the “dark web,” an underground internet that requires specialized authorization for access. The notorious drug marketplace might have been shuttered nearly two years ago. But the industry it spawned continues to live on. The websites found on the dark web operate similarly to those on the standard internet, featuring online marketplaces and browsing sites. Except that most of the dark web properties are used for black markets and illegal activity.
These marketplaces range from gambling and counterfeiting to more insidious activity like weapons and revenge pornography. But the majority of the sites are dedicated hubs for illegal drugs. The risk of sending illegal mail orders coupled with a demand driven by addiction couple allows dark web marketplaces charge a considerable amount of money for the drugs they sell. Using data from Grams, a dark web search engine. And the online publication Quartz recently broke down what some illegal drugs cost on the dark web today. Here are their findings:
- An ounce of marijuana had a median price of $215.31
- One gram of cocaine had a median price of $97.39
- One gram of MDMA had a median price of $37.07
- One 30-pack of Adderall had a median price of $183.46 (about $6.12 each)
- One 10-pack of Oxycontin had a median price of $248.15 (about $24.82 each)
The real cost
Though the monetary costs of drugs on the dark web are certainly high, they pale in comparison to the true cost of drug abuse. From marijuana to prescription painkillers, drug addiction is devastating, and these dark web marketplaces are exploiting addicts around the world. No matter what the substance, addiction takes over the life of the addict, fueling destructive behavior, damaging relationships and destroying lives. If you are suffering from addiction or are seeking help for a loved one who is, get professional help. The Watershed can help you today. We’re here 24/7, call any time: 1-800-861-1768.Tags: illegal drug scam, internet addiction, silk road