A public figure – who is not an elected official – has seen an assassination fund of £75,000 built up against them on a dark website, the Digital Citizens Alliance (DCA) has revealed.
The DCA did not name the person in the report, but it is believed to be Ben Bernanke, chairman of the Federal Reserve.
The Assassination Market website lets users crowdfund assassinations through virtual Bitcoins, with US President Barack Obama one of the people named on the list.
The founder of the website, a crypto-anarchist who goes by the alias Kuwabatake Sanjuro, said: "Once you’re on the list you’re on it until you die."
Sanjuro has said that Bitcoins are used because crowdfunders and assassins cannot be identified through transactions of the virtual currency.
Speaking to Forbes, Sanjuro revealed that they know an assassination is "real" when the killer creates a text file with the date of the death ahead of time, then embeds that data in a donation to the victim’s bounty.
However, Silk Road is the “largest, most sophisticated criminal enterprise the Internet has ever seen”, the DCA suggested, as it allows users to buy hacking services, drugs and illegal weapons.