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A dark room with a light shining on a computer.

Andy Greenberg brings us a gut wrenching story of how criminal investigators used bitcoin tracing techniques to try to find out who was at the center of a child sexual abuse darkweb website.

This story is part of Andy’s new book “Tracers in the Dark: The Global Hunt for the Crime Lords of Cryptocurrency”. An affiliate link to the book on Amazon is here: https://amzn.to/3VkjSh7.

If you are interested in this subject matter and want to hear more podcasts about this very topic, try Hunting Warhead, or Children in the Pictures.


Support for this show comes from Varonis. Do you wonder what your company’s ransomware blast radius is? Varonis does a free cyber resilience assessment that tells you how many important files a compromised user could steal, whether anything would beep if they did, and a whole lot more. They actually do all the work – show you where your data is too open, if anyone is using it, and what you can lock down before attackers get inside. They also can detect behavior that looks like ransomware and stop it automatically. To learn more visit www.varonis.com/darknet.

Support for this show comes from Axonius. The Axonius solution correlates asset data from your existing IT and security solutions to provide an always up-to-date inventory of all devices, users, cloud instances, and SaaS apps, so you can easily identify coverage gaps and automate response actions. Axonius gives IT and security teams the confidence to control complexity by mitigating threats, navigating risk, decreasing incidents, and informing business-level strategy — all while eliminating manual, repetitive tasks. Visit axonius.com/darknet to learn more and try it free.

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Darknet Diaries is created by Jack Rhysider.

Editing by Damienne. Assembled by Tristan Ledger.

Episode artwork by odibagas.

Mixing by Proximity Sound.

Theme music created by Breakmaster Cylinder. Theme song available for listen and download at bandcamp. Or listen to it on Spotify.


Recording equipment used this episode was the Shure SM7B, Zoom Podtrak P4, Sony MDR7506, in the Hindenburg editor.



JACK: Did I ever tell you the story about how Bitcoin sorta changed my life? Okay, it started in 2014. My friends were getting into Bitcoin. I saw them playing around with it and I wanted to learn about this, so I decided to buy one Bitcoin. [MUSIC] The price then was $600. I felt stupid spending that much money on it, but what fascinated me was the trading aspect. The Bitcoin market is open 24/7, 365, unlike the stock market, and I made a little PHP script that would trade Bitcoin after certain indicators were seen, swapping it back and forth between US dollars and Bitcoin. I thought with Bitcoin fluctuating wildly, maybe there was a way to spot some sort of indicator and jump in when it’s going up and jump out when it’s going down. But no, that did not work well. My bot would make some good trades, but with the fees and a few bad trades, it all went back to where I started. So, I turned off the bot and left it alone, still holding one Bitcoin. Well, fast-forward to 2017; I was just starting this podcast and I was feeling really burnt out at work and was ready to quit and just work on the show or something.

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