Child porn bust takes half of Tor’s hidden sites offline

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A man in Ireland believed to be behind Freedom Hosting, the biggest service provider for sites on the encrypted Tor network, is awaiting extradition on child pornography charges, reports The Independent. Denied bail until there is a ruling on the extradition request, Eric Eoin Marques has been described by an FBI special agent as “the largest facilitator of child porn on the planet,” and faces up to 30 years in prison if tried in the US.

The Tor (short for “the onion router”) network is designed to anonymize traffic, with a layered structure by which users re-route each other’s requests through a web of computers multiple times, obfuscating the identity of the sender and receiver. Numerous reports claim that Freedom Hosting users were…

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