Honor Among Thieves: Trust & Safety on the Darknet Market

Trust in the dark: What you can learn about privacy, security, and Trust & Safety from darknet markets

How do you establish trust in a land of lawlessness? Even among criminals, Trust & Safety are paramount to transactions and even basic interactions. These principles are no different on the darknet — the seedy underbelly of the internet.

In order to better understand how digital economy platforms — ones with far more legitimate purposes — can improve their own Trust & Safety, OWI Labs took a look at how trust is formed in the most untrustworthy of places on the internet. Our latest research, “Honor Among Thieves: Trust & Safety on the Darknet Market” shows legitimate business lessons that can be learned from darknet market environments.

“Honor Among Thieves” includes:

  • An analysis of darknet transaction inventory featuring six original charts
  • Investigations of six darknet platforms and five active forums
  • 50-plus pages of analysis and key conclusions

In this deep dive, OWI Labs provides targeted takeaways for legitimate digital companies, showing how to securely authorize transactions, engage with consumers, and build a community of trust. This research also details the struggles faced by darknet markets, and how these lessons can be applied to building legitimate operations. Key takeaways include:

  • The importance of establishing reputation without the need for collecting personally identifiable information.
  • How verification of user claims in the real, physical world can establish a community of trust.
  • How to incentivize reputation-building and trust through gamification.

“Honor Among Thieves: Trust & Safety on the Darknet Market” is available for purchase now.