Examining Differences in Open Web and Tor-Based Data Markets

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Recent research from both computer science and criminology has considered the practices of data thieves and illicit on-line markets and their role in the facilitation of cybercrime and identity theft. These studies are largely based on data developed from IRC channels and web forums and demonstrate the scope of products sold, as well as the relationships between data sellers and buyers. Few, however, have considered the emergent market for data and cybercrime services operating on Tor-based websites and forums. These encrypted and hidden markets may have different operations and data available from those operating on the open web, though there is minimal research on this topic to date. Thus, this study will attempt Eurocrim 2015, Porto, Portugal 35 to address this gap in our knowledge using a comparison of threads and advertisements for data in a sample of both open web forums and Tor-based forums and shops. The implications of this study for our understanding of both environments and law enforcement practice will be considered in depth.


European Society of Criminology


Porto, Portugal

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