If you have been following my thread for a while now, you will remember the previous email scam going around trying to get people to download an infection version of tor. With Silk Road at the time of this post now boasting over 25,000 members, it is easy to get that these occurrences are likely going to increase and unfortunately some people are going to fall for them. This new one is directed at vendors, but it nonetheless should serve as an example of the type of scams that people are going to be trying to pull on members of this forum and other forums.
Dear Valued Vendor,
Due to the recent instability of the site, and our programmers inability to remedy the problems in a timely manner, we are going to have to temporarily shut down vendor accounts. Since we can’t just stop operation of the site completely, we are forced to develop a way for only some of the vendors to go into a temporary vacation mode. In need of recent server upgrades, as well as this new method we are implementing, it has occured to us that the only way to pick which vendors are going to remain in business is by how much sales/profit they are doing, as well as how much being a vendor on our site means to them. Here’s how this is going to work:
If you would like to keep vending on the site during our upgrades/repairs, we are going to require that you pay an additional .3BTC bond to us. If you pay this .3BTC bond, your account will remain active and you will keep vending while we work to fix the problems. If you do not pay this .3BTC bond, your account will be temporarily put into vacation mode status and you will be unable to vend until we locate and remedy the problem. We are very sorry for these changes!
In the event you do pay the bond, as soon as the vending opens back up to everyone, you will have your .3BTC bond returned, and you will receive a premium vendor account status. You will have a title on your page that displays you as “Hardcore Vendor”. We are terribly sorry we have to ask this of all our hardworking vendors, but there is really no other way for us to decide WHO gets to keep vending and who has to wait until we fix things.
Our team is working hard at the problem, and we estimate it will be no longer than a week for the changes to be made and vending to open back up to everyone.
Vendors who will pay bond: Please send .3BTC to BTC Address: 1NbEs2rJgreRUvjp9o7hUWo3akeLA3EfFY
Vendors who are unable to pay bond: Your accounts will go into vacation mode at 12:01AM UTC February 2nd.
Let us never forget this recent hurdle in our battle for freedom. But let us not allow it to stop our fight, either – it is now time to simply pick ourselves back up, dust ourselves off, and continue fighting this revolution like we’ve never fought it before.
I’m proud to have you all at my side.
Dread Pirate Roberts
The user who sent out this message actually used the name Dread Pirates Robert, which is similar but not correct. One thing you should be aware of, is that any type of announcement like this from a high ranking Administrator like DPR will always be signed with their PGP signature. And remember, we discussed how to verify these signatures in a previous post. I remember when a moderator named Sarge was in charge of vendor bonds, there was a user with the name Sarrge (two r’s) that was trying to scam vendors into sending their bonds to his address instead and unfortunately, several people fell for this scam.
Please always check if there is a PGP signature, and if there is not, kindly ask the Administrator or Moderator to resend the message to you using a signature. Protect yourself by verifying the name and make sure this user has an Administrator or Moderator status on the forum. Be safe!