One year after a highly-publicized ‘return’ of the market, AlphaBay admin DeSnake took to the Dread forum to announce the initial results of its harm reduction program, known as Professional Drug Checkers. The program, which began in Mar. 2022, seeks to determine the quality of drugs listed for sale on the market. This process involves independent ‘checkers’ ordering and testing drugs from AlphaBay and providing the results to the administration, which then reimburses the checkers for their work. The data is then published to the market under a special section in the listing page.
The announcement of the publication of this data was also included on AlphaBay, in the market’s news section. According to DeSnake, results will also be published in vendor subs on Dread. Making the data available in multiple locations will serve the purpose of educating as many potential buyers as possible on what they are actually purchasing. The admin believes the program will not only reduce potential harm inflicted by inaccurately-labeled products but is “an essential pillar of any self-respecting platform that does actually care about its users.”
Example of product test results displayed under a vendor’s Harm Reduction Reviews tab
In his Dread post in /d/Alphabay, DeSnake provided a list of the first 100 vendors that had been tested, warning that not every vendor would be happy with the results to be displayed on their page on AlphaBay. He also announced that the market would be accepting applications from additional testers, providing a template of the test results to be provided by each tester.
“The results varied with some disappointing and others impressive. Both sides of the spectrum were seen in both small and big vendors… You will be able to see their results in the Harm Reduction tab on their Listing and/or profile… As time goes on and as we test more and more vendors and listings, we will populate the database to include a comprehensive and detailed list of harmful (or not) substances.” – DeSnake, on Dread
DeSnake stated that a primary reason for integrating the harm reduction program was to help identify which vendors were prone to discretely adulterating their products with fentanyl — a substance known to be a significant cause of overdose-related deaths.
Per stats kept by the market, AlphaBay currently has over 11,000 active vendors and 846,000 registered buyers. It hosts a total of about 42,000 listings. The original AlphaBay had over 400,000 active users at the time of its closure, in July 2017.