Recently, Russia made big news when it announced that a new proposal has been drafted by the Ministry of Finance seeking to penalize users of bitcoin with up to seven years of jail time.
Close on the heels of Russia’s efforts to make the use of bitcoin within the country illegal, the French Interior Minister seems to be targeting the deep web.
Free speech and freedom of choice have started becoming rare commodities these days and interference of the governments around the world is becoming more and more evident.
The US government passed laws which served to conveniently erase the right of privacy to citizen from the constitutional rights and the Russian government is making an all-out effort to ban the usage of bitcoin within the country, while the Venezuelan government is making an effort to present bitcoin in a bad light through state-sponsored media.
Ultimately, the motives of the governments around the world are quite the same.
In a meeting of the National Assembly recently, the Minister for Internal Affairs in France, Bernard Cazeneuve, said that terrorists are making extensive use of the deep web for their activities.
In fact, he was quoted as saying that those who have been responsible for the terrorist strikes in Europe have been making use of the deep web and communicating through encrypted messages.
His comments were also linked to bitcoin, the digital currency that darknet marketplaces widely use in return for the goods they often sell to customers as it makes it virtually impossible to obtain complete personal information during the course of the transaction.
Deep web is that part of the World Wide Web which is not indexed by search engines.
It makes up for a major part of the internet, except for the sites that get indexed by the different search engines.
It has been in existence for a very long time, much before search engines became popular.
However, the terms darknet and deep web became widely known only in the recent times. In fact, it was even labeled as the place for carrying out illegal activities on the internet.
The darknet marketplace that was squarely responsible for creating a negative connotation as regards to the deep web was Silk Road.
This dark net marketplace gained a great deal of notoriety by selling contraband as well as illegal drugs in exchange for bitcoin.
The Silk Road has been closed down since then and the creator of the darknet marketplace, Ross Ulbricht, has been sentenced to life in prison following an investigation into its activities by the federal government.
Some people do not have a clear understanding of either the deep web or the darknet.
Of course, there have been isolated incidents wherein the deep web has been made use of for illegal activities, but it is a very insignificant percentage if the number of Internet users across the world is taken into consideration.
It is a combination of factors such as negative publicity and ignorance that has successfully led to the creation of not-so-good image for the deep web.
It is the governments that are too anxious about losing the control they are currently exercising over the monetary system and information sharing are blowing up these few incidents and using them as an excuse to track and crack down deep web and bitcoin users.
For example, making the use of bitcoin in Russia illegal is one thing, but enforcing a jail term for using the digital currency is taking things a little too far.
Currently, the new proposal is only in the draft form.
If Russia’s Ministry of Finance has its way, then consumers could end`1 up in prison for about four years.
On the other hand, business owners who use bitcoin could spend nearly double the time in prison.
These actions on the part of governments lead people to thinking as to whether they are focusing on the deep web after their tryst with bitcoin.