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German Police Seized Some of Hydra Market's Servers

Authorities in Germany announced the seizure of Hydra Market’s servers and 23 million euros worth of Bitcoin associated with the market.

Germany’s Federal Criminal Police Office (BKA) seized servers in Germany allegedly used by the administrators of Hydra Market, the largest darkweb marketplace. Authorities also seized Bitcoins worth $25,186,840 (23 million euros). According to the announcement, the Bitcoins are “attributed” to the market.

A picture of The BKA's banner is not currently loading for me.

The BKA's banner is not currently loading for me.

Law enforcement agencies in Germany and the United States have been investigating the market since August 2021. The investigation involved the BKA, the Central Office for Combating Cybercrime of the Frankfurt am Main Public Prosecutor’s Office (ZIT), the United States Internal Revenue Service - Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI), the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), the Department of Justice (DOJ), the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), and the United States Postal Investigation Service (USPIS).

Hydra’s “previously unknown operators and administrators” are under investigation for the operation of a criminal platform on the internet, enabling the trade of illegal narcotics and money laundering. The spokesman for the Central Office for Combating Internet Crime (ZIT) of the Frankfurt Public Prosecutor’s Office, Sebastian Onion, said that investigators have not yet identified any suspects in the case. “Therefore, the investigations are far from over,” Onion said.

A picture of A screenshot of Hydra

A screenshot of Hydra

Hydra is the largest darkweb marketplace, and sales on the platform amounted “to at least 1.23 billion euros in 2020 alone.” Hydra has been operating since as early as 2015, authorities said. More than 17 million customers and 19,000 vendors have registered accounts on the platform. Hydra’s Bitcoin mixer made investigations “extremely difficult for law enforcement agencies.”

The announcement follows the March 10 arrest of the founder of the payment service company Chronopay, Pavel Vrublevsky. Russian law enforcement arrested Vrublevsky and three co-conspirators for defrauding hundreds of thousands of people through scams, including phishing and fake lottery sites. I wrote about the case but never published it due to the lack of information.

A picture of Pavel Vrublevsky | Kommersant

Pavel Vrublevsky | Kommersant

Per the Russian media outlet Kommersant’s report, Vrublevsky and his co-conspirators allegedly operated another payment service called Inferno Pay. Inferno Pay is “a cryptocurrency token and payment API that can be used on multiple websites, both new and existing, eliminating chargebacks and fraudulent activity,” according to the service’s website.

Through Inferno Pay, which appears to be a shitcoin for the so-called “porn industry,” Vrublevsky allegedly “provided cash-out services” to Hydra. If the report in Kommersant is correct, it appears as if Vrublevsky provided money-laundering services to Hydra’s administrators in the past.

I am doubtful of any connection between Vrublevsky’s arrest and the recent seizure of Hydra’s servers.

For Hydra, though, all this amounts to is the loss of $25 million in Bitcoin and server infrastructure in Germany, I suspect. The seizure banner no longer loads for me. Perhaps we will see a repeat of the Doxbin saga where law enforcement agencies and site administrators publish competing onion service descriptors.

archive.is/archive.org/bka.de

A picture of “Professional criminals” in the US involved in the drug trade... just sad. Many such cases.

“Professional criminals” in the US involved in the drug trade... just sad. Many such cases.

I guess it is fair to speculate that Hydra’s administrators have made enough money that keeping the market online becomes pointless. Which is essentially what Empire’s admins did, I think.

20 Comments
Do you really want to comment here? not rules
97bb3b1a
a673a990 Tue, Apr 5, 2022

The seizure banners are becoming more creative lol

af02651f
fa5c6010 Tue, Apr 5, 2022

kingdom market 8.0 script gypsies on suicide watch lmao

30ba1782
369104d0 Tue, Apr 5, 2022

I’ve only got two hands you can cuff, might as well put some fuzzy pink shit on the third one…

7a0a6c96
c87948f0 Tue, Apr 5, 2022

The meme does not make much sense when probably admins are behind bars. Previous year around January appeared that dox about Hydra’s admins and suddenly LE starts tracking Hydra in the same year. And the biggest Russian market hosted in Germany? If those were the people with the highest OPSEC I do not want to know those with the worst…

14a46cd3
409620f0 Tue, Apr 5, 2022

So the dudes walked with their lives but lost 25 million, wow what a getaway… wonder how they compromised the servers “Long Live Alpha2.0” Dark Net Live…

edb72fbc
591f2fc0 Tue, Apr 5, 2022

What you find within the darkness of your mind is light brow

958985d5
6149b3f0 Wed, Apr 6, 2022

H@ck3R ManiF3ST02

9741788f
82671b60 Wed, Apr 6, 2022

It would be clutch if Hydra came back ABv2 like.

444682ea
b1f68d70 Wed, Apr 6, 2022

Chump change actually. The article below, the feller in Florida lost way more.

e63acddf
f4cefad0 Thu, Apr 7, 2022

It’s late af so I don’t know if i’m right or not but he isn’t the admin I believe. He hosted the website and communicated with the admins who paid him to host the website

55fea870
ffee3a20 Wed, Apr 6, 2022

Who have another hydra’s link?

0b19b49c
9aa6fe10 Thu, Apr 7, 2022

WWIII has already begun, tied them boys up and shot them like dogs in the street, an actual mobile cremation units capacity is Russian top secret, as them water filtration camps…

84f41519
fc5723b0 Thu, Apr 7, 2022

How dumb are those administrator whose btc got seized? just transfer it to a cold wallet damn…

91c91ebb
292f1140 Fri, Apr 8, 2022

@^: Market the size of hydra has to hold $25M hot for settlement at any given time.

6a09efd1
14f7bca0 Fri, Apr 8, 2022

RIP Hydra the longest running market that would make Ulbricht and Vallerius so jealous. still no admin arrested till this moment. Perfect and impressive.

HAIL HYDRA!

DNL plz snip the same comment on the Fed Poke Holes post. the comment was meant here not there

24fee05f
85123440 Fri, Apr 8, 2022

Read about hydra in mythology and you understand why reborn is only a matter of time. These guys are counting on it from the very beginning

6d45ea8d
641de9a0 Sun, Apr 10, 2022

Man why did they was having a 23 million worth of btc on a market server? they seeming talented but this mistake just

5f04a2c9
a283c600 Sat, Apr 30, 2022

My theory is that the coins which were seized were the total sum of coins held in escrow as well as coins in user accounts possibly which were in server side user wallets at the time of seizure. If this is indeed the case then yes, admins likely arent too concerned about that because I am sure that admin profits were likely not stored on the server and have been being mixed and laundered or stored on various cold wallets through out the time the site was active.

6bd7537c
e7492a60 Thu, Apr 21, 2022

the whole situation is weird to me

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