Red Rooms and Hitmen and Scams, Oh My!

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Given that there are some disturbing things on the dark web, I could see how it would be easy to believe in the mythological stuff as well – and I know I’ll never convince everyone otherwise.

Still, I thought I’d take another trek onto Tor and see if I could find a few of these sites, in order to analyze their claims. Hopefully, no one else comes after me! (wink)

The Red Rooms of Pain

So, there are a plethora of sites on Tor that claim to be red rooms, as I’ve said on other posts. I’ve received a lot of comments saying that I’m incorrect about this, but if that’s the case, I want you to prove it to me!

The first few of these that I clicked on resulted in the ubiquitous “…connection has timed out” message. You know, like this one:

tor_connection_has_timed_out_edited

Well, that’s Tor for you! I have heard the conjecture before that red rooms will stick around briefly, and then the operators will just “close up shop” and move to a different link, but that seems only partially true.

Finally, after exploring a little while, I did find one red room site that “worked,” so to speak:

redroom_edited

Of course, I didn’t join, nor did I contact them. All the other ones I’ve come across recently look the same, or similar, which is one of the reasons I believe that these are all fake. They look as though they could’ve been made very quickly and easily, and setting up a Tor hidden service, in the grand scheme of things, is not that difficult. Anyway, if you click “join,” the second page looks like this:

redroom_2ndpage_edited

One of the things that makes me curious is that on the second page, it reads:

red_room_download_edited

If you click that, it takes you to a “payment” page where, supposedly, if you pay 0.005 BTC, you can download a video of the previous show. (I’m highly dubious about this.)

redroom-pay_edited

If one of you feels comfortable paying this and downloading the video, go ahead – but as I’ve said before, you’re taking a chance of downloading malware or simply losing your bitcoin. I’m not willing to do either, to be honest.

Oh, But Wait a Moment…

On the other hand, someone I talked to recently questioned my belief about the non-existence of red rooms. He also seemed to be someone who was knowledgeable about these sorts of things (e.g. darknets and online crime).

I don’t know this person well, but he asked if I had come across any sites on Tor that looked vague and mysterious, and required a username and password to enter. In fact, I have, many times.

A few of these sites did not even say what they were about; they simply had a login page. Most of these I found by hunting around – they weren’t catalogued in the popular link lists (such as The Hidden Wiki, for instance).

When I visited the sites, they looked somewhat like this:

loginpage_10

There were no other details or descriptions, simply a login form like that. Of course, I was very curious as to what these sites could be. The person I was talking to suggested that these sites could be red rooms. He also suggested that streaming video over Tor isn’t as difficult as people make it out to be. (Hmm…)

As I mentioned on PsychoTube: The YouTube of Tor?, it is possible to watch videos over the network, but I haven’t tried streaming anything live. Maybe it would be a good experiment for someone to try (albeit without the murder part). Granted, I don’t have proof that the above sites were red rooms, but I do have to wonder why they were so secretive.

They may also have been similar to Dark0de, which was a former cybercrime forum. I encountered its Tor hidden service early on in my dark web “travels.” Their login page, likewise, looked very vague and nondescript:

dark0de_login

So…what’s your take on this, readers? Are some of these “mysterious” sites actually red rooms? Or are they just boring forums and chat rooms?

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Exploring Tor Links Again, Just For You!

Based on the comments I get, I’ve become aware of how much people love to see so-called “dark web links” on here. For that reason, I’ve done a little exploration and found some new ones.

Note to my readers: if you have requests for certain types of links, let me know. I can try to find some, but I can’t guarantee that I’ll come across the ones that you want. Honestly, some of the things that people are looking for (in my experience) just don’t exist.

http://mdn47pmcst65jblo.onion/ – Dark City IRC

dr47oldcaubn7ukf.onion – Level 7 Galaxy

http://gtp5d6nojrgqivle.onion/ – Game Console (requires JavaScript – may not be a good idea to use with Tor)

http://n44ppdgvmnrckhvh.onion/ – apollyon (requires password; might be members-only)

http://s6sykeumpavhsveg.onion/ – IniziCraft (some kind of coding community)

http://tpbom7barowq2c2u.onion/shop/tpb – Каталог – The Pirate Bay

Well OK, there’s my teaser – what other kinds of links do you want?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Flare: A Beta Tor Search Engine

flare_search_engine

Those of you who love “links, links, links!” will be happy to know that there’s a very new search engine on Tor called Flare, which looks similar to Candle, another search engine. It’s at this URL: http://dlggj2krbqzm5dru.onion. Honestly, this was the first thing I pictured when I heard the name:

flare surf

Anyhow, Candle, as I mentioned on a previous post, is one of several search engines that indexes Tor hidden services. It’s not quite as popular as not Evil or Grams [EDIT: Grams no longer exists], but it gets the job done.

Candle_Tor

Flare, in turn, is very similar (in fact it may even be a fork), but because it’s in beta form, it still needs help with its algorithms and speed. One interesting (and somewhat disturbing) feature that it has, at present, is that it lists some previous searches done by other users to the right of the search results.

Being aware that a lot of people on the dark web are looking for CP, you can guess what kinds of search terms may show up there. Well, it’s Tor – what did I expect? I just wouldn’t want to meet any of these people in person.

Anyhow, the more that you use a particular search term, the faster it will come up in the future. I tried out the following searches:

“red room”

“hacking”

“dark”

“market”

“carding”

I believe I tried a few others too, but I don’t recall. Compared to a search engine like not Evil, it doesn’t get as many results, but like Candle, Flare seems more focused on getting relevant results, rather than the largest number.

Interestingly, out of the search terms above, “market” returned the most results, by far. Should I really be surprised by that? The first result was a site called “Counterfeit USD,” at this link: http://qkj4drtgvpm7eecl.onion

counterfeit_money

Seems legit.

I haven’t tried out their services, but my first instinct was that it’s a scam, because other sites like it have turned out to be scams. Speaking of which, Flare also has a “Scam: true or false” label beneath the search results. However, simply because a page is labeled “false” does not necessarily mean that it’s the real thing. I’ve been on the dark web long enough that I’ve started assuming that everything is a scam (or almost everything).

That aside, I like the search engine so far, and I recommend trying it out. Perhaps, if more people start using it, it will improve.

Hey, maybe you could even get your site indexed on it! (Hopefully not the scam version.)

Red Room Follow-Up!

Red-Room-Deep-Web-2

by Ciphas

So, continuing on the subject of red rooms, I received a comment recently on my post Red Rooms Finally Debunked Forever? that said this:

“THANK YOU Bob Saget. Just because red rooms don’t fit under your perfect “criteria”, that doesn’t mean they don’t exist. I personally know somebody who has been a part of a red room, but he wasn’t the murderer. He was the victim.”

She was replying to an earlier comment by someone who went by the name of Bob Saget (yes, that was his name), who gave me a hard time for trying to disprove the existence of red rooms, and cited Peter Scully’s videos as an example – in other words, this guy:

peter_scully_2

So here are my thoughts: what I’ve said so far about red rooms has been based partially on my personal experience, and also what I’ve researched about them. While I have not seen such a thing (or at least not one that I believe to be genuine), here is how I would define a red room:

A website (presumably on the dark web or a private network) where you can pay to witness torture and murder.

While I realize that some very sick things exist on Tor and other darknets (most notoriously child pornography),  streaming video over Tor would be incredibly difficult, at least the way it works at present. If you don’t understand how onion routing works, this link explains it quite well: What Is Onion Routing, Exactly?

onion-routing-2

It is possible to watch video on Tor (and I have, in fact). As I mentioned on my recent post PsychoTube: The YouTube of Tor?, there are a few sites on which you can watch uploaded videos, but they certainly aren’t live. It’s very similar to LiveLeak, in that it features videos of murders, executions, and war. By the way, another dark web blog that I like, All Things Vice, has addressed this subject as well: You wanted darker web?

allthingsvice_darkerweb

That being said, how does this square with the above comment? Well, my heart goes out to anyone who’s a victim of torture or murder; nonetheless, as far as that having something to do with red rooms, the burden of proof is on the claimant. One site on the clearnet, Red Room Deep Web Complete Guide, goes into detail about what allegedly happens in a red room, and how to see one (in theory).

redroom_allabout

Without reviewing all the things this site says about it, I think a number of them are wrong – and it looks like they’re using a scam site as their example. But you could, of course, create your own red room.

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How would you create a red room, then? Stay tuned for Part 2.

Don’t Use the Hidden Wiki – Use These!

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I’ve noticed that quite a few people recommend The Hidden Wiki as a “starting point” for using Tor.

While it does have some good general information about Tor (and darknets in general), most of the links that it features are scams – at least the financial ones, or anything that you would have to pay money to use. Though I don’t suggest using it, I’ll link to it anyway, just so you can see what I mean: http://zqktlwi4fecvo6ri.onion

This probably goes without saying for people who have been using Tor for a reasonable amount of time, but for those new to the dark web, it seems like a lure to ensnare people unfamiliar with it.

Granted, some of the links are innocuous – you’ll see things like the search engines, and some of the “library sites” like the Imperial Library of Trantor. On the other hand, there are quite a few sites that promise things like “bitcoin doubling,” “free drugs,” etc. – these are all scams.

So…if you don’t use the Hidden Wiki, what should you use?

Well, as I’d mentioned in several earlier posts, there are a few Tor search engines that are good:

notevil-chat

Besides these search engines, there are other link lists you can find, one of which I also mentioned in my earlier post, Fresh Onions: Best Tor Link List?:

welcometodarkweblinks

Of course, these sites, too, may have scam links on them, but they’re at least mixed in with other things. And for whatever reason, I also find them to be more interesting than the Hidden Wiki – whether that’s because they have better links, or just look creepier,  I can’t say. Nevertheless, I have found a lot of the interesting sites I discuss on these alternate link sites and search engines.

Besides these, if you’re just looking for a group of people on the clearnet who hunt down onion links like you do, I’d suggest the subreddit /r/onions: Things That Make You Cry. They’re a pretty cool group of folks.

As for me, I’ll make an effort to include more onion sites in some of my future posts. Have fun checking out some of the ones I’ve shared here, in the meantime!

 

 

Fresh Onions: Best Tor Link List?

onionscan-transitive

It doesn’t surprise me in the least that you dark web explorers are constantly looking for new links.

I used to often use Harry71’s Onion Spider as a go-to link list when I was looking for new and unusual onion sites. Unfortunately, he no longer updates the site (even though the URL is still active).

That being said, have you heard of the site Fresh Onions? It can be found at http://zlal32teyptf4tvi.onion/.

freshonions

Fresh Onions has its fair share of onion links, and like Harry71’s former site, it’s updated frequently. I was going to take a screenshot of the whole site, but on the device I’m currently using, that function was disabled.

Basically, the list of onions can be sorted by URL, Title, how recently it was added, when it was last visited, or when it was last up (i.e. active). At the time of this writing, it lists 4470 onions, and growing.

So you may be wondering – what kinds of sites are on it?? Well, at first glance, I see a lot of tech sites, some markets, a few forums, and some scam sites. Just what I expected!

While I have yet to create my own onion crawler, here’s a short sampling of some of the sites that are listed on Fresh Onions (note – I make no claim as to the authenticity of any of these; if it sounds like a scam, it probably is.):

http://geekrakaz7kioics.onion – Dark Forum (an anonymous hacking forum)

http://answerstedhctbek.onion – Hidden Answers

http://atmskima36v2nqdc.onion – ATM Skimmer for Sale (likely a scam)

http://hbwc3pyawkeixqtk.onion – DeepHouse – Bienvenue sur DeepHouse!

http://sourcel3zg2kzu4k.onion – Sourcery

http://by5cptxw44znwsbn.onion – Index of /

http://onicoyceokzquk4i.onion – .onion searcher

http://kwf4zz4colvmzb42.onion – Ooga Booga

http://4pf5lakpitrmnpnp.onion – Dungeon Masters: Welcome to Pier!

http://tordox5bgdpmnong.onion – couldn’t connect to this one, but it sounds like a doxing site.

http://nsz6gzlqldxhrvex.onion – NEMESIS Ransomware

http://dark666b5l2e3lcu.onion – Dark Host – real TORland hosting with onion address

Anyhow, if you want to check out the full list, visit the Fresh Onions link above. Have fun, dark web explorers, and don’t get scammed (or kidnapped, for that matter)! I kid.

6446164fc586e94687ab4f5e3c2ec12e--scary-pictures-old-pictures

 

Dark Web Links: New Tor Search Engine!

In some of my past posts, I’ve mentioned that there are a few search engines on Tor that you can use to find .onion links. These vary greatly in quality, but the main search engine that people seem to use is called “not Evil”: http://hss3uro2hsxfogfq.onion – in previous posts, I’ve referred to it as the “Google of Tor.”

NotEvilSearchScreenshot

Beyond not Evil, there’s also Candle, Ahmia, TORCH, and (of course) Grams. In a much earlier post, I interviewed the creator of Candle: A Chat With Jobi – Creator of Candle Search Engine.

One of the differences with Candle is that it gets far fewer results – however, Jobi stated in the interview that he focused on getting more accurate results, rather than the largest number. TORCH gets a reasonable number of results, but in my experience, they aren’t always accurate.

torch_search

Ahmia, on the other hand, gets results on its search engine results page (SERP) that are usually quite accurate, but like Candle, it doesn’t return a large number. One of the things I like about Ahmia is that if the results include something like CP, you can report it and they’ll exclude it from future searches. The same goes for not Evil.

ahmia

Where is the Darkest Search?

So what other search engines exist? Well, one of the link sites I like, called Welcome to Dark Web Links and More, added a search engine to their features. While it doesn’t get as many results as not Evil does, it’s interesting to compare the two and see if they come up with anything different.

welcometodarkweblinks

The actual search engine is located at http://bznjtqphs2lp4xdd.onion, and seems to index onion sites differently than the other search engines, although I couldn’t tell you exactly how the algorithms work. If anyone has a link to a repository for this search engine, I would be curious to find out some more!

One difference I’ve noticed between the WTDWLAM search engine and others is that it has an option called “View This Link with Proxy Redirection For Added Security.” Given that I don’t always trust proxies, because you don’t know who’s spying on your traffic, I hesitate to use this one. Plus, it’s Tor, for God’s sake – why would you need extra security?

2A5mxOZ

Read this WIRED article for more info: Proxy Services Are Not Safe. Try These Alternatives.

Anyhow, I did a few searches with the WTDWLAM search engine, and got quite a few results, although they weren’t always accurate, but that’s to be expected. If you search for the string “red room,” you get 567 results! Are there really 567 red rooms? (Well…no.)

This might be a fun experiment to play around with, and see what mysterious sites you can find. Hint: they probably won’t be much different than the ones you’ve found before.

On the other hand, if you do find anything cool, let me know in the comments!

(Just don’t spam me, OK? Or spam me. I don’t really care.)

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