In other bizarre incident, vendors in the notorious dark web are selling plasma of recovered coronavirus patients.
According to a report published by the Australian Institute of Criminology, plasma of recovered COVID-19 patients is sold as a vaccine in the dark web. The vendors selling plasma are promising it to the potential customers as “a life immunity against coronavirus”.
The price of one litre of blood was listed as high as AUD 21,600 supplied via distributor from Sweden. The payment method integrated into the dark web is mostly through bitcoins using blockchain technology. Blockchain is the safest payment gateway portal which is untrackable.
People purchasing the unauthorised plasma are likely to inject it into their blood which can be quite fatal, says Rod Broadhurst (Researcher). The most active vendor was ‘DrugLord22’ with 23 listings.
At least 20 Tor websites were checked to find the listing of plasma sold as a vaccine. To a shock, there was a listing of at least 645 with 222 unique products. The estimated cost of all these products got valued at $369,000.
Not just blood, people have also reported the listings of the saliva of coronavirus survivors.
Other illegal products listed on the dark web were PPE kits, Chloroquine, Azithromycin, Ventilators, Thermo-scanners, sanitisers and other diagnostics. Moreover, a single piece of a ventilator was priced at $2000 whereas 500 pieces of test kits at $3,287. The vendor shipping location of these products mentioned is from the USA, Sweden, India, Turkey, Canada and 15 more other countries.
Cyber criminals worldwide are deliberately abusing and getting good profit from such illegal products. Nevertheless, some darknet markets are removing the listings of such products for ethical grounds. Monopoly, a famous darknet marketplace, have banned the listing of COVID-19 related products. The dark web is already a huge online marketplace for illegal items such as drugs, guns and stolen technology. The vendors use deep encryption techniques to hide the identities of sellers from the authorities.