On December 21, RWH, the Paradise market chief admin and programmer, kindly agreed to answer questions and shared ideas on his marketplace and the future of Russian DNM in general. Here is an interview we conducted with him:
How long has Paradise been operating?
RWH: Since the middle of June 2017, that is almost half a year already.
How did you get an idea to establish a market?
RWH: It occurred to me when I was buying stuff in instant stores on RAMP. I basically avoid buying dead drops hidden in random places or far from my district and always try to find the nearest point. That is why every purchase took not less than 2 hours. It was caused by a complete lack of location search filters to sort listings. And I thought that I was definitely not the only one annoyed of these long searches. It led to the foundation of my own marketplace, which main advantage would be an advanced search, making fast purchases possible.
Why did you pick a name like “Paradise”?
RWH: I chose it simply because Paradise sounds good! We had no particular premises for this name.
How many staff members do you have?
RWH: There are only two of us – me and Anderson.
Which difficulties have you encountered when administering the market?
RWH: There were some difficulties at the very beginning, mostly technical ones, but code refinement solved those issues. At the moment we face only one significant problem – DDoS attacks.
What features make Paradise different from other markets?
RWH: As I have already mentioned, the main distinctive feature is an advanced system of search and filters. It is odd, that other marketplaces have not implemented this useful scheme. We also try to stick to the philosophy of minimalism – that is why our website is not overloaded with functions. I guess it is also one of our special features.
What can you say about the recent “war” between Russian DNM?
RWH: I consider that any “war” is a grave event. I do not support DDoS attacks and provocations and find these methods to be disgusting. But such “wars” cannot be avoided when there is big money in the business.
Did Paradise suffer from any recent DDoS attacks?
RWH: For the first time we were attacked in August 2017, and attacks lasted several days but we successfully fought them off. It seems to me that they were carried out by non-professionals. Then, around the end of November, another DDoS attack followed, more complicated, and we did not manage to struggle with it. The attack was aimed at the Tor Process, which was wasting all server’s resources because of heavy load time and finally made an access to our mirror link unreachable. Tor developers know about this vulnerability but do not hurry to eliminate it because the scale of the threat is relatively small (DDoS attacks are a common practice for drug community, the rest of darknet is hardly affected). A serious damage was inflicted – the website went offline for several weeks. We lost income and trust of some buyers and vendors.
What are future plans for the market?
RWH: To begin with, we need to find investors and build a proper protection against DDoS. Then we will continue to improve current functions and introduce new features. Everyone can find out information about planned innovations on the market’s forum.
Which changes or additions are scheduled?
RWH: First of all, we plan to add a system for hiring dead droppers and manage their work; and an automated QIWI-BTC exchanger for customers. We also plan to use a detailed sales statistics. Further we shall act in accordance with the situation and paying respect to users’ needs.
Will you add other cryptocurrencies as payment methods?
RWH: Commission for BTC transfers has increased due to a great rise of Bitcoin rate. It makes smaller transactions ($50-100) unprofitable – because you have to pay $25 to miners, apart from an exchange’s commission. Buying cheap goods, which constitute a major part of sales, has become too expensive. If the current situation will not change in a month or two, then we are likely to add other cryptocurrencies to solve users’ requests.
Do you plan to implement multisig transactions along with classical escrow?
RWH: At the moment there are no such plans. The security of our Bitcoin wallet is high enough, that is why there is no need in multisig transactions.
Do you map out working at the international level?
To finish up, I would like to wish everyone good luck! Stay safe and visit Paradise market using this link Paradise marketplace.
Thank you for your answers.