Genesis Market Crackdown

Dark Web Genesis Market Seized in ‘Operation Cookie Monster’

Published on: April 6, 2023
Last Updated: April 6, 2023

Dark Web Genesis Market Seized in ‘Operation Cookie Monster’

Published on: April 6, 2023
Last Updated: April 6, 2023

On Wednesday, the National Crime Agency (NCA) of Britain reported that a dark web marketplace called Genesis Market, widely used by cybercriminals, was seized by international law enforcement agencies in a multinational operation known as “Operation Cookie Monster.”

Although official press releases regarding the takedown have not been released by authorities, a banner on the Genesis Market domains indicates that the FBI has executed a seizure warrant.

However, the marketplace administrators have not been apprehended or identified, and the FBI is investigating anyone who has been in contact with them.

In addition to the logo of the British National Crime Agency and the FBI, the Genesis Market site also displayed logos of other law enforcement agencies from Europe, Canada, and Australia, as well as the logo of the cybersecurity firm Qintel.

According to the BleepingComputer, individuals responsible for operating the Genesis Market have maintained a low profile over the years, suggesting that they possess a high level of operational security knowledge.

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In a news release reported by the Washington Post, US Attorney General Merrick Garland said that “Our seizure of Genesis Market should serve as a warning to cybercriminals who operate or use these criminal marketplaces: the Justice Department and our international partners will shut down your illegal activities, find you, and bring you to justice.”

According to a statement by the Treasury Department, officials believe that Genesis operated from Russia and maintained a presence on the dark web, which allows users to operate anonymously.

As of February, the marketplace had approximately 460,000 packages of stolen information listed, which included passwords for email accounts, video streaming services, and social media accounts.

The British authorities reported that the operation involved 17 countries and was led by the FBI and Dutch National Police.

As a result of the operation, approximately 120 arrests were made, more than 200 searches were conducted, and nearly 100 instances of “preventative activity” were carried out.

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Written by Husain Parvez

Husain has been around the internet ever since the dial-up days and loves writing about everything across the technosphere. He loves reviewing tech, writing about VPNs, and covering Cybersecurity news.