Freedom Hosting was one of the largest .onion website hosts until it suddenly started serving malicious code, and eventually went offline (presumably permanently).

What was the sequence of events that led to Freedom Hosting going totally offline?

  • Could whoever voted to close please explain why they consider this off topic? Given we're still fleshing out exactly what is or isn't on topic, a link to the relevant meta discussion would be appreciated. Commented Sep 28, 2013 at 15:51
  • I've started a meta discussion around whether this question is on topic or not. Please feel free to discuss opinions there. Commented Sep 28, 2013 at 15:59
  • Perhaps a more-useful question would be something like: "How does one go about securely hosting hidden services?". Although the current FAQ covers the basics, it doesn't address crucial anonymity and security issues.
    – mirimir
    Commented Sep 30, 2013 at 4:20

1 Answer 1


According to the Wired article FBI Admits It Controlled Tor Servers Behind Mass Malware Attack, "the FBI yesterday acknowledged that it secretly took control of Freedom Hosting last July". The article notes that "[i]t’s not clear how the FBI took over the servers". However, the comment that "the bureau was temporarily thwarted when Marques somehow regained access and changed the passwords" is suggestive. Perhaps the FBI obtained Marques' account credentials. Or perhaps it used social engineering or coercion. Additional details may come out in court.


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