Police aren’t looking for people who legitimately use anonymity software such as Tor (The Onion Router), according to the head of the UK’s new cybercriminal unit.
The newly-formed National Crime Agency (NCA) said that criminals would not be able to use Tor without being pursued by the agency, while legitimate users for the software were safe.
Speaking to the Daily Telegraph, Britain’s new top cyber cop Andy Archibald said that his organisation wanted to send a clear message to cyber criminals that their computers could be traced, even if using the software.
“You may think that you can operate anonymously online and have the security of Tor to conduct your business but you can’t,” he told the publication.
But he added that those using the dark web to carry out legitimate tasks, such as journalist or whistle blowers to communicate in private weren’t on the radar of the police.
“We’re not interested in those who use the Tor for perfectly legitimate purposes, it’s for those who are using it to conduct and do criminal business and criminal activity,” said Archibald, who is head of the NCA’s National Cyber Crime Unit (NCCU).
He said that the recent arrests of four men in connection with the online narcotics marketplace Silk Road proves that criminals cannot use Tor to carry out crime anonymously.
Archibald said that his organisation would take a more active role in fighting crime and will use all the legal and technical resources at its disposal to disrupt criminal enterprises.