This is an overview of Sri Lanka’s three busiest non pornographic darknet sites. What they say about the undercurrents of Sri Lankan life I’ll leave up to you.
Possibly the oldest Sri Lankan darknet site. It began life as a dial up BBS (Bulletin Board Service) to coordinate death squads during the second JVP terror in the late 1980s. Now it’s Sri Lanka’s busiest violent services portal site. It’s the digital version of one the 9 essential uncles you need to survive in Sri Lanka .
You can order everything from multi person killings and abductions to minor harassment. There is also a dizzying array of online/social media intimidation and defaming packages. Nearly all of them have skilled Photoshopers to cook up false incriminating photos.
Adding to the complexity of services is the fact that it’s all modular. You can plug in a murder package with a forensic clean up. Yet the most popular offerings are simple physical intimidation and surveillance services. These involve having victims conspicuously followed and latter hounded in social media.
Not all the services are one offs. There is a ongoing membership option. Membership protects you from having anything done to you via the site. Just the thing if you in property disputes. Practically all the minor politicians have signed up.
Services providers are freelancing former or current shady operations types. Hard men to who whom brutality is a casual business act. Yet are smart enough to profit from it. Lately ex LTTE operatives have expand operations to Western Europe. There are two pricing streams. E payments by Bit Coin. Or a cheaper rate if you pay hard currency cash. Prices are quoted in Swedish Kronar*.
It has to be the slickest looking Sri Lankan darknet site. At a practical level it is a secure forum for human rights activists, digital journalists and citizen hacktivists. You can improve your crypto resources. Get tips on secure ITC4D. The meeting room feature is particularly useful for secure virtual ad hoc organisational meets. There’s also a hefty database of scripts and zero day exploits for sneaking into government IT systems (not that you really such things).
There is a certain air of exclusivity about the place. Piss off the wrong people and you’ll be locked out. A tell tale sign is when certain admins start correcting your English on public forums.
CIA Sri Lanka web portal
This is the business end of the tiny CIA station in Colombo. It aims to let locals sell/leak information with “minimal risk exposure”. The key draw is a dollar based reward structure and the dangled promise of a Green Card.
Aside from keeping an eye on Chinese activity, Sri Lanka is a backwater for any ambitious CIA type. The site was started (so the rumour goes) by a former station chief. It enabled her to exponentially increase information gathering at minimal cost. The result: a promotion and a posting to higher things. This precedent is a key motivating factor behind the site’s energetic out reach and user centric approach.
The site recently launched Tamil and Sinhala versions. These are aimed at getting Sri Lankan slaves in the Middle East to pass on information about their Arabian masters. However the actual users of the site are people attached to “domestic service training agencies”. These front organisation are run by local operatives. They train and debrief informers on their vacation visits to Sri Lanka.
The exact details of how it all works is murky. After all this post has gone on long enough. My imagination needs a drink. So I might as well end it here. I leave you with the hope that you are not one of those gullible types who believe everything they read online.