PlaceMarket is a seemingly tricky market in the dark web. PlaceMarket was designed by a team of developers who wanted to create a market that focused on security whilst providing the cleanest and most user-friendly marketplace environment.
Placemarket launched on April 20th, 2017. It has most of its messages on the home page as well as the market itself encrypted. In becoming a vendor which is now free, you will have to decrypt the series of messages and then enter the key in a box below.
Placemarket is a straightforward marketplace. There aren’t many options to explore apart from the obvious ones of course. It somewhat has a lackadaisical appearance.
- Placemarket Market URL: http://plcmkt2lhafgfrkb.onion
- Placemarket Account Registration and Login Links: http://plcmkt2lhafgfrkb.onion/Market/Register
How to Access Placemarket
Placemarket has an onion link (http://plcmkt2lhafgfrkb.onion). In order to access Placemarket, you will require the Tor browser. It is just a Firefox which enables anonymous web browsing. There is no change in the interface. The various add-ons of Firefox can even be installed on this browser without any configuration.
The use of Placemarket also requires a VPN service, PGP encryption and decryption software. The use of Bitcoin is the main currency. The VPN service prevents anyone from monitoring your online activities. PGP, on the other hand, is used in making sure that your messages and other information you are sending can only be received and read by your intended recipient.
Bitcoin is the choice of currency used in darknet marketplaces since it allows anonymous transactions. It is also reliable.
These are basically the things you need including a Tor browser to buy and sell on Placemarket. Regarding your protection, you would want to use a VPN service and PGP encryption.
Creating an account on Placemarket is not really that complicated. There is a Register button on the home page as well as login boxes for username and password for members with an account already.
To begin the process of registering an account, you just click on the register button right below the login boxes. This will lead you to a form in which you will have to fill out some information.
This information includes your preferred username, matching passwords, and a secret phrase. Yes, a secret phrase is required and this is to ensure that you are not on a phishing site.
Phishing is the attempt to obtain sensitive information such as usernames, passwords, and credit card details (and, indirectly, money), often for malicious reasons, by disguising as a trustworthy entity in an electronic communication. You will then see a pin box that will help you verify purchases.
Therefore part of your registration is receiving a public key. There is a box but it won’t accept any key you type because you will be given a new generated public key after you click on the sign-up button.
This is obviously after you enter the CAPTCHA box. The registration process won’t take much time. It can be completed in around a minute. The Public Key registration is the annoying part in this registration. It should be straight forward but rather they give you are a new one after clicking on the sign-up button.
This is also after you are prompted on some kind of PGP failure. It will tell you either your public key is invalid or something is up with PGP with foul words explaining that maybe they screwed up and they are sorry.
Placemarket Interface and Function
The account dashboard does not have the best visualization or design. It is basic. There is no sweat involved because of the absence of images and animations.
As you log on to your account, you will be directed to your account dashboard. It is not that complicated. There is a Placemarket button which will take you back to the homepage upon clicking it. A Placemarket messaging page has all the basic features which include the ability to send and draft messages.
The Placemarket account dashboard features a search box which you can search anything that’s on your mind. It also remembers you and your secret phrase which verifies that you are not on a phishing site. It has a support request section that offers general support and a representative to contact.
But for issues regarding the Placemarket system itself, you would have to contact the admin directly.
There is no news display, however.
Categories and Listings
Placemarket has a total of nine categories with over 144 listings. These figures are relatively small compared to other leading darknet marketplaces. There are also categories which have no listings. This is very unusual in other leading markets, but with time the listings should increase.
This puts Placemarket at the bottom when it comes to the business of the darknet. The category in the same order on the marketplace is as follows:
- Fraud (27)
- Self-Defence (0)
- Drugs (17)
- Guides (39)
- Carded & Counterfeit (0)
- Software (32)
- Security (5)
- Services (2)
- Misc (22)
Vendors on Placemarket are able to create listings, manage sales and make money off products all at a 5% fee. There is no fee to pay to become a vendor though. If you agree to become a vendor, you will become a vendor automatically and this is after you decrypt a message and type the code in a box below.
Your account can be closed if you wish. All it entails is emailing them with your account number, PIN and if you use multisig, your multisig public key.
Multisignature often called multisig is a form of technology used to add additional security and also for Bitcoin transactions.
Child Pornography and Hitman Services which exist in forbidden items in many darknet marketplaces are strictly off limits or prohibited and should not be seen in any listings. Going contrary to this, however, results in serious consequences including the immediate cancellation of your vendor account and possible ban. Fees are also withdrawn from your wallet balance to prevent high Bitcoin transaction fees.
Search and Listing Filters
Like most Darknet marketplaces, the search bar on Placemarket is largely located in the center just below the Placemarket logo. But no results are given when you search for anything there.
I tried many words and searched products but still to no avail. There is nothing more to display when it comes to the searching of information. It seems the search bar is practically not working. Any attempt to contact the admin as to why the search bar was not working was futile. A message was sent but no reply was given.
How to Deposit Funds
Deposits cannot be made to the site directly to fund your purchases. The site uses Bitcoin in its transactions. You can pay vendors directly from your Bitcoin wallet.
How to Place Order
You choose from the listings in the categories. It then takes you to a list of subcategories of which you can choose what you want. Each service has its price and quantity besides it and a green Escrow button to select if you wish to purchase it. After clicking on it then takes you to this page:
If you wish to continue with the order, you then go and confirm the purchase.
How to Pay for Orders
Placemarket holds payments in escrow and therefore payments are done through that medium. Escrow is a financial agreement where a third party holds and regulates the payment of funds required for two parties involved in a given transaction. Many websites provide Escrow services online.
When you are in need of support or assistance from the admin of Placemarket, click on the contact admin button directly. This will then take you to a page where you will have to type your message, enter a CAPTCHA and then click on send.
For general support though, you can contact their support representative, Shaman. Ticketing systems are used here so there is a response to any problem you send.
Pros and Cons
- The marketplace promotes multisig payments
- It has a good support system
- Good security system with a two-factor authentication
- Limited number of listings
- The CAPTCHAs needs multiple re-entering
- Messages are hard to decode in trying to become a vendor