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As cybercrime becomes a growing problem for law enforcement bodies around the world, Interpol is training police officers in the methods criminals use to avoid detection in the hidden parts of the Internet.
On Friday, Interpol's Cyber Research Lab completed its first-ever training program on the subject, for which the group built its own private "Darknet" network. It was designed to simulate underground marketplaces like the now-shuttered Silk Road -- an anonymous black market of drugs, weapons and hacking services -- that must be accessed using special software. Interpol announced the training program in a statement released late Friday, as the blog ZDNet first reported.
The officers who participated in the training learned about the technical infrastructure of the Dark Web and of the anonymous "cryptocurrency" bitcoin that is often used in these black-market deals. They also role-played as sellers or buyers in simulated transactions and participated in "takedowns" of the simulated marketplaces.
"Darknets are fast emerging as the preferred trading venue for organized crime networks and individuals to carry out illicit activities," Madan Oberoi, the director of Interpol's Cyber Innovation and Outreach unit, said in a press release.
Interpol said it is planning a second course for November in Brussels, as well as a separate training for senior law enforcement officials.