The alleged owner of ‘The Real Deal’ Market is facing charges in the United States.

A 34-year-old British man suspected of running the now-defunct darknet market “The Real Deal” was charged in the United States yesterday. Daniel Kaye, who ran the market from abroad, is wanted by authorities on charges of access device fraud and money laundering conspiracy for his role in the sale of credentials for accounts belonging to US federal institutions.

The Real Deal also sells hacking tools, botnet access, social media accounts, bank accounts, credit card information, social security numbers, and even drugs in addition to government-linked login credentials. Kaye is suspected of running The Real Deal with another person designated in court filings as thedarkoverlord from early 2015 to late 2016, utilizing a variety of online aliases while performing administrative chores. In September of this year, he was extradited from Cyprus to the United States.

The Real Deal was one of the earliest dark web markets that concentrate in computer exploits and stolen data, filling a hitherto unfilled niche in the darknet economy.

Kaye, a cybersecurity contractor turned malware developer, is accused of being the mastermind behind multiple hacking incidents, including the botneting of 900,000 routers on the Deutsche Telekom network in November 2016. He exploited router control to launch a DDOS attack against a Liberian internet service provider that served a local competitor. During its course, the attack knocked the whole country offline. He is also suspected of being responsible for data breaches on Myspace, Yahoo!, and LinkedIn.

Kaye allegedly laundered money from his sales through Bitcoin tumbler Bitmixer.io while living in Cyprus, despite the fact that The Real Deal went offline in November 2016. He was detained for the first time in February 2017 on accusations related to the Deutsche Telekom attack, and then again in London in 2019 on charges related to a second hacking event, and was quickly linked to the Liberian ISP attack.

The US Navy, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), US Postal Service (USPS), and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) are among the agencies impacted by account sales on The Real Deal (NOAA).

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