Tor, what is it good for? How crime predicts domain failure on the darkweb

Author: 
Date created: 
2017-07-14
Identifier: 
etd10345
Keywords: 
Tor
Darkweb
Survival analysis
Cox regression
Crime severity index
Abstract: 

Content analysis of the darkweb shows the volume of illicit domains which are speculated to facilitate criminal activity. Describing Tor serves a valuable purpose, however does not allow for broader speculations about the criminogenic nature of the environment and the dismantling of the hidden services. Examining how the criminal content leads to domain failures is a small step towards providing insight into any casual mechanisms on Tor. The current study analyzes how 774 categorized domains explain website failure using a Cox repeated events regression while controlling for structure, popularity and size. Tor domain failure was found to be a function of popularity and size rather than criminality. Some criminally focused domains, however did survive longer on average than legal websites. The visibility of the domains may lead to increased costs financially as well as socially. The lack of infrastructure paired with law enforcement interventions may explain domain failures on Tor.

Document type: 
Thesis
Rights: 
This thesis may be printed or downloaded for non-commercial research and scholarly purposes. Copyright remains with the author.
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Richard Frank
Department: 
Arts & Social Sciences: School of Criminology
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.A.
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