An analysis of underground forums

Marti Motoyama, Damon McCoy, Kirill Levchenko, Stefan Savage, Geoffrey M. Voelker

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


    Underground forums, where participants exchange information on abusive tactics and engage in the sale of illegal goods and services, are a form of online social network (OSN). However, unlike traditional OSNs such as Facebook, in underground forums the pattern of communications does not simply encode pre-existing social relationships, but instead captures the dynamic trust relationships forged between mutually distrustful parties. In this paper, we empirically characterize six different underground forums - - BlackHatWorld, Carders, HackSector, HackE1ite, Freehack, and L33tCrew - - examining the properties of the social networks formed within, the content of the goods and services being exchanged, and lastly, how individuals gain and lose trust in this setting.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Title of host publicationIMC'11 - Proceedings of the 2011 ACM SIGCOMM Internet Measurement Conference
    Number of pages9
    StatePublished - 2011
    Event2011 ACM SIGCOMM Internet Measurement Conference, IMC'11 - Berlin, Germany
    Duration: Nov 2 2011Nov 4 2011

    Publication series

    NameProceedings of the ACM SIGCOMM Internet Measurement Conference, IMC


    Other2011 ACM SIGCOMM Internet Measurement Conference, IMC'11


    • online social networks
    • underground forums

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Software
    • Computer Networks and Communications


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