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The decentralized marketplace Openbazaar has been continuously building its platform since inception. Now the Bitcoin-powered marketplace has finally merged Tor integration into the Openbazaar platform adding a long-awaited layer of privacy to the program.
Also read: Paul Sztorc Discusses Bitcoin & Sidechains
‘Tor the Most Requested Feature By Far’
Openbazaar is a different approach to ecommerce. Through creating a decentralized peer-to-peer marketplace that’s censorship-resistant, participants are connected directly rather than depending on a centralized service such as Ebay or Amazon. The platform does not charge any fees and has no restrictions in regards to what can be purchased and sold. Openbazaar officially launched the platform in April of 2016 and has been preparing to revamp the marketplace with its 2.0 version.
When Openbazaar was released, many bitcoiners continuously begged the development team for Tor integration. Tor is free software that enables private communication by redirecting internet traffic through thousands of relays. This layer of anonymity conceals a user’s location and traffic from network surveillance efforts. Back in September Openbazaar developer Chris Pacia told Bitcoin.com, “Tor has always been the most requested feature by far — but it’s always been a bit of a technical challenge to implement.”
Openbazaar and Tor’s Relationship Begins on Valentine’s Day
On February 14 the Openbazaar team showed the Bitcoin community some love by revealing the code for Tor integration was ready. Members of the community seemed thrilled as many of them exclaimed that Darknet Markets can now be created from home. One Redditor writes, “Bring on the illegal commerce”, while others were not so sure they wanted illicit activity coming to the network.
Bitcoin.com decided to reach out to Openbazaar developer Chris Pacia to find out how he feels about finally releasing this integration into the wild. Pacia says he’s pleased the code has been merged but only recommends experimental use for the moment.
“I’m happy we got it merged but there’s still more to do,” Pacia told Bitcoin.com. “At some point, we want to have a security audit for both Openbazaar and IPFS. Until we do that I wouldn’t recommend people using it for anything other than testing. Going forward there’s still a few more features to implement in the daemon and a bunch of tests to write. And most of the features need to be incorporated into the UI.”
Openbazaar Marketplace Prepares for 2.0
As Bitcoin.com reported at the North American Bitcoin Conference, the founder of Openbazaar, Brian Hoffman, had revealed the release of the platform’s 2.0 developer version. Hoffman went over the many improvements the team was working on including an integrated wallet system and a better search engine. Openbazaar still has more work to do as far as development and user base traction is concerned. But with more privacy features a new flock of users may start participating. Furthermore, Pacia tells us the team could use a hand developing the platform.
What do you think about Openbazaar integrating Tor? Let us know in the comments below.
Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Openbazaar, and Chris Pacia.
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