Because the dark web is a continuum where all users are untraceable it is more often than not used by people to indulge in indecent and unethical endeavors. Not only can a user hire hitmen over the web but can also arrange murders with further classifications like having a victim shot, beat to death, or having their car set on fire too.
Such an occurrence happened back in November 2016, where Stephen Carl Allwine, aged 47 and married, had his wife killed in “one of the most bizarre cases ever seen,” according to a news report. Amy Allwine’s body was found in a bedroom with a single gunshot wound to the head and a 9 mm gun resting on her forearm. She was declared dead on the scene. It was the husband’s attempt to dodge authorities into perceiving the case as a suicide one putting the pistol next to his wife. Despite his efforts, detectives on the scene did not jump to any conclusions and collected as much evidence as they could, which mostly consisted of Mr. Allwine’s electronic devices.
After the confiscated devices returned from forensics analyses, Mr. Allwine was charged with a second-degree murder based on them and was arrested. Later, however, an unusual encounter aided the police into upraising the charge to first-degree murder, and made the suspect’s conviction inevitable.
— News Headquarter (@newshqtoday) January 19, 2017
An ethos practicing hacker, breached the database of a darknet website that offered exactly the kind of services the defendant required and leaked the data. The service, “Besa Mafia,” offered connections between clients and hitmen who had registered on the website anonymously, or so they thought. Not only did it reveal links between malevolent users and their professional hired hitmen, but it also exposed other details like set prices of different ways to murder victims that ranged between $5,000 and $200,000.
The hacker put on a public website the data clumps, site’s user accounts, with email addresses, personal messages between the Besa Mafia admin and its clients, “hit” orders and even a folder named, “victims”, all inclusive. This provided exclusive information on all underground scams that had taken place.
Because Besa Mafia was exposed to be fleecing money from its customers and not delivering their promised services, the hack proved the site to be a scam itself. An independent researcher, Chris Monteiro, who had also hacked the website, stated for it to have garnered at the lowest 50 bitcoins which match up to $128,000 based on the cryptocurrency’s June 2017 exchange rate, from their con actions.
Listed in the site’s client list was, yes, Mr. Allwine too. Not only did his username “dogdaygod” match up to his email firstname.lastname@example.org, but the mentioned bitcoin addresses led straight up to the man himself also. The conversations between him and the site’s admin stated that he had paid approximately $15,000 to have his wife murdered, according to a criminal compliant. Instructions for her to be shot at close range, and for their house to be burned down afterwards, were all in too.
However, after Mr. Allwine had the money transferred, the Besa Mafia communicator told him that “local police [have] stopped the hitman [from] driving a stolen vehicle and taken [him] to jail prior to the hit,” thus rendering him unable to complete his service. Hence the suspect had to put his target down himself. The complaint cited Sergeant McAlister, a police officer in Minnesota, to have reported that there was “no one was apprehended in Minnesota and western Wisconsin in a stolen vehicle and possession of a gun”, around the same time.
Later further involvement of Mr. Allwine in the dark web was exposed due to the hack too, and it was found that the individual had been making use of the site since the year 2014 – mostly purchased a drug, scopolamine, via the web — a dose that was found to be 45 times higher than the recommended level in an average being.
According to a message uploaded by a Besa Mafia administrator that was found in the dump, “This website is to scam criminals of their money. We report them for 2 reasons: to stop murder, this is moral and right; to avoid being charged with conspiracy to murder or association to murder, if we get caught.”
Even though the term ‘hacker’ has a negative connotation generally, there still exist such individuals who would rather use their abilities to procure sensitive information or infuse a network with mayhem for the purpose of control. Having the public’s best interest at heart, as per their personas, these “white hat” hackers continue breaking into systems, whether it be to point out security flaws, or to bring to the public eye what remains under the sheets of the dark web.