In this guide we explain everything you need to know to connect to the Mega darknet marketplace.
Mega is a new Russian-language darknet market that was created to fill the gigantic void left by Hydra, which was shut down in early April of 2022. Despite a number of competitors that have also risen for this purpose, Mega seems to be one of the biggest such markets and is among the most popular darknet market-related search terms on Google this year. Like Hydra, the market is centered around “shops”, which are vendors that cater to particular locations and hide orders at designated “dead drop” locations (hidden items are referred to as “treasures”). Also like Hydra, Mega services only customers in Russia and a few other countries or territories of the Russian Federation.
Basic Facts about Mega
- Year founded: 2022
- Mega Darknet Market Link: mega55c5n43r6huw3gg6gufg665hb3xdoondm4fvd4sfrikdyqmvs7yd.onion
- Cryptocurrencies accepted: Bitcoin (BTC), Monero (XMR), Tether (USDT)
- Total Product/Service listings: 19,100+
- Listing Categories: Marijuana, Stimulants, Euphoretics, Psychedelics, Ecstasy, Pharmaceuticals, Dissociatives, Opiates, Precursors, Other drugs, Security, Documents / Currency, Carding / Hacking, Cards / Wallets, Schemes / Training, Electronics, Other products, Hacking / Systems Penetration, Design / Coding, Shipping / Transportation, Advertising / Mailings, Currency Exchange, Other services, Courier, Manager, Advertising, Stocks, Other jobs
- Multi-signature escrow? No
- Finalize Early? No
- Cost of vendor bond: $0
Disclaimer: This guide is for research purposes only and should not be construed to be advice; legal or otherwise. The authors of this guide do not condone activities that are illegal in your jurisdiction or others. Use the contents of this guide and/or Mega at your own risk.
Don’t Get Phished
Even though Mega is a newer market, it has already been the subject of many impersonation attempts, with several phishers setting up fake URLs, hoping to lure users into depositing funds on a fake site. Mega maintains two clearnet URLs from which market mirrors can be found:
Make sure you get your link to the market from a verified source and always use the same link when possible. Outside of the sites provided by Mega themselves, never a good idea to search for a link on the clearnet – especially on a social media forum like Reddit – as this is the way most people encounter phishing links and lose their deposit. We recommend sticking to the same, trusted sources when attempting to find a link for Mega or any darknet market. Mega itself presents the user with a large list of mirrors upon login — it is recommended to copy and paste them all for later use.
Creating an Account
Granted you understand Russian, creating an account on Mega is exceptionally simple. After finding a legitimate URL and solving the basic captcha, you will be brought to the login screen. To create an account, you’ll first want to click on the Registration button (“Регистрация”) located toward the upper-right corner of the screen. This will bring you to the account creation screen, which looks like this:
There are two types of accounts: Buyer and Vendor. The screen is set to Buyer account creation by default. Simply enter in a unique username (something not related to any of your other online identities) and a password, twice. After you have done this, scroll down to the captcha and drag the slider until the letters are visible in the captcha area. Then enter the letters in the box below. It should look something like this when correctly entered:
Press the orange Registration button to proceed. If you entered the captcha correctly and in time, you will then be logged into the market, greeted by a message at the top that says “To confirm, you must agree to the updated rules” (“Чтобы продолжить Вы должны подтвердить обновленные Правила”). Read Mega’s terms of service, presented immediately below, so you have a better understanding of what to expect when using the market. Press the orange “Confirm” button at the bottom upon deciding to accept them. You will then be brought to the main market page and can begin browsing.
Setting a PGP Key
You will need attach a public PGP key to your address to receive encrypted communications from other users. This is vital for receiving pertinent information related to your order and is a must. To do this, first click on your username in the upper-right corner of the screen. Next, paste your PGP key in the corresponding text box (labeled “PGP-Ключ”). It will look something like this when correctly entered:
Notice there are two check boxes under the PGP key entry field. Checking the first entry will make your PGP key visible to other users and checking the second entry will require that you decrypt a message encrypted with your key to log into the market. We recommend configuring your account with a PGP key which has never been used before, that way there is little downside to checking the first box. The second option (2FA) is a great way to make sure that nobody can log into your account except for you, so if you value your account security, we recommend checking it as well.
After you have entered your PGP public key and set the options the way you want them, press the orange Save button to continue. The page will refresh with your PGP key now attached to your account. Note that there is no confirmation process for verifying PGP keys added to your Mega profile. This means that you should make sure the PGP key in properly entered the first time you do it. If it is not, and you have activated 2FA, you will have trouble regaining access to your account.
Making a Deposit
As Mega uses the traditional, exchange-controlled account wallet system, you will need to find your account before placing an order. This poses certain risks as it makes them potentially more likely to carry out an exit scam. To minimize the impact that such an event could have on your funds stored there, we recommend only depositing enough funds to cover one order at a time. When you are ready to make a deposit, click on the account balance (next to your username) toward the upper-right corner of the screen. This will bring you to the deposit screen, which looks like this:
Mega supports three different cryptocurrencies for deposit (most are accepted by all vendors but double-check to make sure your vendor accepts the coin you are depositing before making a deposit). We recommend using Monero (XMR) whenever possible, and for the purposes of this guide we will be explaining how to make an XMR deposit. To do this, first click the “XMR” tab to reveal the Monero address.
Here you are presented with an XMR address in text and QR code form to which you will make your deposit. Deposits are credited to your account after six confirmations, and new addresses are generated after each deposit (do not re-use old addresses as your funds will likely not be credited to your account). For a fee of 0.01 XMR, withdrawals can also be performed by entering a withdrawal address and amount to be withdrawn under the deposit address QR.
Mega offers its own built-in exchange for those who want to deposit one coin and convert it to another. This option can be found in the Exchange (“Обмен”). Here you can exchange any one of the three coins supported by Mega for one another, for a small fee. Simply select the coin pair you wish to use and enter the amount you wish to exchange. You will be provided with a conversion rate for your coin amount. If you agree with the amount being exchanged, press the orange Exchange button to confirm. The process will take anywhere between 20-40 minutes to complete.
Browsing the Mega darknet market is not as easy or intuitive as some others (Hydra included) and it takes a little getting used to the site’s format to find the item(s) you are seeking. The leftmost two tabs at the top of the screen are Catalog (“Каталог”) and Shops (“Магазины”), which are the two options for how the market is divided. The main market page also features a few ways in which listings can be filtered, including by category, type, city, area, quantity, and price. There is also a general search option. Listings categories (and subcategories) supported by Mega include:
- Marijuana (cones, hashish, other)
- Stimulants (alpha-pvp, amphetamine, cocaine, MDPV, other)
- Euphoretics (mephedrone, MDMA, MDA, other)
- Psychedelics (2C-B, LSD, NBOM, DMT, mushrooms, other)
- Other drugs
- Documents / Currency
- Carding / Hacking
- Cards / Wallets
- Schemes / Training
- Other products
- Hacking / Systems Penetration
- Design / Coding
- Shipping / Transportation
- Advertising / Mailings
- Currency Exchange
- Other services
- Other jobs
As this is market is only meant to be used by those in Russia and surrounding countries/territories, you’ll probably want to filter listings by area and city. Areas serviced by shops on Mega include an abundance of locations within Russia and a few other countries, most notably of which are Belarus and Ukraine, and Georgia. It is difficult to find vendors that will ship internationally, and it is not recommended that you try to have a package delivered from Mega as you will likely experience difficulties.
Selecting a category and city/area from the main market page will automatically refresh the screen to bring up listings that fit the selected criteria. Vendors with an established history and many positive customer ratings tend to have their listings displayed first.
From this view we can see the following information about each listing: title, category/subcategory, vendor name, and location. An orange checkmark next to the listing title means there are “ready-made treasures” available for this item (they are ready to be picked up at any time). A green checkmark means the item can be pre-ordered (dropped as a “treasure” after the order has been placed). Click on the gray mail icon to send the vendor a message about the item.
Clicking on a listing brings up extended information about it, including a detailed description of the item, where it can be picked up as a “treasure” (and for what price at that location), what coins are accepted by the shop for item payment, and reviews of the item by previous buyers.
The listing page also displays details about the vendor shop, including its registration date on Mega and the username of the particular salesman responsible for that item. You will also find additional pictures of the item. Item prices often vary by listing and are displayed in BTC and RUB.
Another way to search the market is by vendor shop (“Магазины”) which is handy if you are looking for shops that are available in your area, or if you already trust the shop and want to browse their catalog. Some vendors specialize in one category of item while others have listings for several different types of items. Shops can also be filtered by area, city, and categories of items they offer as listings. Clicking on a vendor shop will reveal its “store,” or all its current listings.
To reveal additional details about the shop, click on its name. Here you can find the full list of registered users that take part in the shop’s administration and/or delivery service, as well as links to send a message to them. You can also find information written by the shop owners themselves and see a list of the most recent feedbacks left by customers of their items.
Placing an Order
Before attempting to place an order, it is imperative to understand the following: Mega makes use of the “dead drop” system, referring to secretly-placed orders as “treasures.” This means orders are not placed through the postal system but rather hidden by vendors in highly-specific locations that are revealed to the buyer after purchase. You will need to find a shop that services your area before placing an order. There are two types of “treasure” placement methods:
- Ready-made. Also referred to as “instant” orders, these are pre-hidden “treasures” that have already been placed and are ready for immediate pickup.
- Pre-order. These are “treasures” that are placed after an order for the item has been received and accepted.
Some shops use both methods and some use only one or the other. It is important to know which method the shop is using for the particular item you are purchasing to avoid potential confusion. The dead drop system applies to all physical item orders placed on Mega. Digital items, on the other hand, are usually made immediately available to the buyer after purchase.
After you have found an item you wish to purchase (physical item) and have confirmed the shop has it available in your area, first select the currency with which you will use to purchase it (BTC, XMR or USDT). The price to be paid for the item will be displayed in RUB and the currencies accepted by the vendor during the coin selection process.
Next, press the green Buy button. If you have enough funds in your wallet to cover the purchase, you will then be brought to the order confirmation screen. Here you will have a chance to review the details of your order before deciding to place it. This includes double-checking the location of the drop area and whether it is a ready-made or pre-order “treasure.” If you are satisfied with the price you will be paying for this item, click the Confirm button to proceed.
The order will then be sent to the shop where they can choose to accept or refuse it. If the shop accepts your order, they will then send you PGP-encrypted instructions on where the “treasure” is located, frequently referred to as a “quest.” Note that if this is not a ready-made order, you will have to wait until after the seller has hidden the item somewhere. Shops have up to 48 hours to reveal the location of the “treasure” before an order may be cancelled. You can keep track of the status of your orders by clicking on the shopping cart icon in the top menu bar area.
If the shop does not respond with the “quest” instructions within 48 hours, funds will be automatically returned to your wallet. If the item you ordered is not at the described drop point or you have other problems with it, you can open a dispute through the order status screen. Doing this will prompt the Mega staff to get in touch with the shop on your behalf to help you resolve the issue. If the staff finds the shop did not prepare and place the order as promised, a refund will be issued to your wallet balance.
Mega Darknet Market URL – mega55c5n43r6huw3gg6gufg665hb3xdoondm4fvd4sfrikdyqmvs7yd.onion
Though still much smaller than Hydra in terms of both listings and shops, Mega has grown significantly over the last few months as more buyers and sellers from the old market discover it and decide to give it their trust. They have a round selection of listings by this point for all the usual, highly-sought after physical items, as well as several offerings for professional services not often seen on other markets. Mega offers “free registration” for buyers and sellers, not charging shops to open up for business on their market. It does, however, charge stores $100 per month to operate as well as a 5% commission on each sale under the amount of 100,000 RUB (this percentage decreases for higher sales amounts).
Mega has some modern implementations that were not seen with Hydra and is a bit of an upgrade from the older market in that respect. Most notably, it supports XMR and USDT. It appears that the market was also about to implement QIWI, a Russian payment services provider, but that option is currently unavailable. Mega seems to have all the infrastructure in place to run a competent operation, although the reliance on a centrally-controlled account wallet system makes it a potential candidate for an exit scam.