Let me explain!
This faction would operate somewhere like a gang and syndicate. Gang as in, accessibility-wise, and syndicate as in, organised crime-wise. Contracts like these could be as simple as someone really hates person x, so they go to this faction and write up what they'd want and the price. Might just even want to cause grief to rival corps without it being directly traced to you. Even hiring someone to just chuck a molly for absolutely no reason other than to annoy someone.
The syndicate part of this faction would come in, in terms of endorsement and rep. The more contracts you do for them, the more riskier ones are offered, with higher pay. If it goes south, then they wouldn't feel as if it was just a waste of time and resources. They still tried. They still went out of their way to do a topside contract. In addition, it'd be good to feel a steady progress in the faction so unlocking different weapons, resources, rooms.
This wouldn't just directly promote topside conflict, it'll desentize players to topside crime. If there's a lot happening, a lot of people doing topside mischievous things, and players see them gaining from it, no matter how small, more will want to join. Even if the contract is a bust and the player doesn't succeed, others will see what they gain from it.
Another thing that came up is.. How would someone go pick up these contracts? I might have an idea for this as well that will include a lot of people in RP... Why not make it part of a decker service? Get someone with specific decking skills to be able to open up a node with contracts. In addition, someone can add contracts there. This will make it so deckers are waaaaay more useful! This would also remove the problem of how legal it is. If it's an underground decking group that organizes topside crime contracts, it would explain how hard it is to crack down on these people.. Nobody's seen them!
Would also not affect current syndicate standings since it's purely topside crime! Not only that, it would make it easy for GMs to place contracts there if they want more for a specific day. GM's doing a big plot and need someone to cause a distraction topside for something else? Slap a contract on the boards with what they want, price and how open it is. Payment? Decker group, bank transfers from anonymous.
How would they receive specific boons? Could have an ID like there is at the Term on CnC. Can make it so deckers with a lite term can see what's happening in the open market contracts but not able to see who's taking who? Or maybe have a secluded term in an abandoned place? Or even have to ask a decker to do something with the QuickTerm to be able to see it? Maybe someone in the Park? These are all open questions, just throwing out ideas!
Of course, this isn't near as fleshed out as it needs to be, but I think it's a very solid starting point for topside crime to just happen! Hope you guys like this idea. I'd personally take part in this. Curious to see where everyone stands!