Navigating the Darknet itself is not the safest activity a websurfer could do, consequently accessing the Darknet marketplaces require deeper research of which ones are safe to browse.
Competence, reliability, and honesty should be the key traits to look for.
As no legal regulations are ruling those markets, in theory it could be easy for sellers to send bad quality items or even not send them at all to the buyers. So what should you look for to find a trustworthy and reliable Darknet Market?
The reputation of a Darknet Marketplace is built over the reviews of its customers. In essence, as it is not usually advertised, a Darknet Marketplace gets known as its users are out there recommending their services.
The first suggestion is to research on platforms such as Reddit and Twitter where you can rely on thousands of people’s experiences which ultimately hold the collective judgments of the entire Darknet community.
As far as I know, Dark Eye would be a good place to look for reviews. For instance, take a look at this:
Before you take a look at reviews, here’s what you should keep an eye on while reading them:
Speed of response
It is a good start to get to know how fast you can get a response from the seller.
Quality of Products
Reviews of the quality of the products can assure you that you will receive what you are expecting.
Speed of Delivery
Another suggestion is to inform yourself about how fast you can expect to receive your goods and if they are available to be delivered to your location.
Check for Refund Policy Information
Most darknet places provide a different web page where they talk about their refund policy information. It’s extremely important to understand how to proceed in case you need a refund for any reason.
More importantly you should know if the moderators are active or not.
On some sites like DarkFox, you might never be able to get a reply from the moderator.
The Onion Router (TOR), is not as safe as most people would like to believe and as it has already become very popular, many users tend to neglect certain things they have to do to stay hidden while surfing the Darknet.
Always use a VPN with TOR.
To access some Darknet Marketplaces a registration will be necessary, make sure to never use your email address, real name or anything that could make you traceable.
Preferably choose decentralized exchanges that do not require creating an account asking for that information or any KYC (Know Your Customer) verification, as it keeps all transactions anonymous and safe for Darknet.
Choose Your Vendor Wisely
Sometimes darknet marketplaces are not the culprit, it’s those who sell. So whenever you come across a product, make sure you check the vendor’s details.
A typical seller’s page will be filled with details like their:
- Name, usually a pseudonym, of the seller
- How many successful transactions they have completed
- When they last logged
- Anything that shows their reputation
If you are not new to accessing the Darknet, you must already know that the payments for any transaction must be anonymous and should keep your identity hidden.
Make sure you understand step-by-step how to proceed to make payments as each Darknet Marketplace has its own rules, fees, and specific cryptocurrency.
Other than this, see if they do PGP transactions.