A user by the name of Victoria sends me her menu through a Discord direct message.
“Selling PayPal, credit cards and Amazon gift cards,” it reads. “Price list below. Please don’t contact me if you are not serious, can provide evidence and vouches. Refunds always.”
She offers every piece of contraband at a huge discount on its face value. A gift card supposedly worth $200 costs $25; a $1,000 gift card costs $80. Stolen credit cards come with “full info on how to use them, including security numbers and CVV,” and they “can be used in EU, U.S., or the UK.”
For most purchases, Victoria says she uses a half-and-half payment system. After a customer selects what they want to buy, they deliver 50% of the fee to Victoria’s Bitcoin wallet. Once the item has been delivered, the customer wires over the remaining money.
Discord was founded in 2015 as a platform for gamers to communicate through voice chat and text chat. Similar to Slack, anyone can start a server, and issue an invitation for anyone else to join. Over the years, Discord has grown into a more generalized social media platform — with servers dedicated to everything from basketball to political debate, and a user base of over 250 million around the globe. Discord has no mandatory identification verification, and the promise of anonymity occasionally attracts dangerous activity. Earlier this year, OneZero reported on the platform’s unregulated teen dating channels. Now, there’s evidence that Discord is being used by some users to facilitate a wide variety of possible financial crimes.
In a conversation over a Discord call, Victoria, who claims to be 20 years old, says she works as a “middleman” for another hacker that’s active on the dark web. Her job, essentially, is to bring the hacker’s wares to the Discord marketplace. So, Victoria posts her advertisements on the many “market servers” on Discord with names like Plug Central, House of Cards, and E-Walmart, all of them are filled with people just like Victoria, canvassing the chatrooms with fugitive goods.