The Drugs and New Technologies (DNeT) project aims to investigate drug marketplaces online and in other emerging technologies. It aims to assess and quantify the online availability of drugs, including both traditional and new psychoactive substances. This is accomplished by active monitoring of marketplaces on the ‘dark web’, i.e. those accessibly only by specially routed connections (e.g. The Onion Router), such as the Silk Road. It also aims to monitor new drugs, as well as internet forum discussion of these drugs. Findings are then placed within the context of other available indicators, such as the Ecstasy and related Drugs Reporting System (EDRS), to assess the impact of online availability on the Australian drug market.
We are in process of automating all stages of DNeT to ensure more timely reporting on findings from online marketplaces, with updated outputs highlighting key findings anticipated soon. Please contact the research team (firstname.lastname@example.org) for further information.
The DNeT project aims to:
- Provide a timely and accurate description of online availability of illicit and emerging substances
- Quantify the extent and diversity of this availability across online platforms
- Contextualise online marketplaces within the greater Australian and international drug market monitoring
DNeT consists of accessing active cryptomarkets weekly and quantifying the range of substances available, the number of unique vendors and, where possible, the countries of origin of vendors. This data is collected over time and assessed for changes that may arise due to policy and legislation changes, as well as high profile media stories involving emerging substances and online marketplaces.