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Servers Seized In Ukraine, Moldova As Germany Takes Down 'World's Largest' Illegal Darknet Marketplace


The Europol police agency says data they seized will help further investigate illegal trade on the darknet. (file photo)

German authorities have shut down "the world's largest" illegal online marketplace as part of an international operation against the darknet.

The so-called DarkMarket was taken offline and more than 20 servers, located in Ukraine and Moldova, were seized as part of an ongoing investigation of users of the illegal platform, Europol said on January 12.

"The stored data will give investigators new leads to further investigate moderators, sellers, and buyers," the European police agency said.

An Australian citizen alleged to have been the operator of DarkMarket was arrested near the German-Danish border over the weekend.

Around a half million users and more than 2,000 sellers used the website to sell illegal drugs, counterfeit money, stolen or falsified credit cards, anonymous SIM cards, and malware.

More than 320,000 transactions were conducted via the website using cryptocurrency amounting to around $170 million.

German investigators led the international operation involving authorities from Australia, Denmark, Moldova, Ukraine, the United Kingdom, the United States, and Europol.

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