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Dark web users are easy to unmask through their bitcoin use

Who is hiding out there...?

Who is hiding out there…?

Description: iStock/Getty Images

You can surf the dark web but you can’t always hide. People who want to keep their online activities secret will often use both bitcoin, which is tied to pseudonyms, and the Tor browser, which obscures your real movements. But if you’re not careful, all that hassle could be for naught.

By linking bitcoin wallets with transactions on the dark web, researchers at Qatar University in Doha were able to unmask 125 Tor users.

Supposedly secret activity on sites like The Pirate Bay – which hosts torrents of pirated music and films, for example – and the black market Silk Road – a kind of Amazon for illegal products, such as drugs and guns – could then be linked to individuals’ social media accounts on the normal web.

The weak link in the chain between the normal web of sites we use every

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