These groups have been taking advantage of the chat platforms within the dark web to inspire terrorist attacks. Groups have even posted “How To” guides, teaching people how to become and hide their identities as terrorists. Due to its relevance in the digital world, Bitcoin has become a popular product for users to scam companies with. Cybercriminal groups such as DDOS”4″ have led to over 140 cyberattacks on companies since the emergence of Bitcoins in 2014. These attacks have led to the formation of other cybercriminal groups as well as Cyber Extortion.
You can conduct discussions about current events anonymously on Intel Exchange. There are several whistleblower sites, including a dark web version of Wikileaks. Pirate Bay, a BitTorrent site that law enforcement officials have repeatedly shut down, is alive and well there. Medical records, fee-based content, membership websites, and confidential corporate web pages are just a few examples of what makes up the deep web. Estimates place the size of the deep web at between 96% and 99% of the internet. Only a tiny portion of the internet is accessible through a standard web browser—generally known as the “clear web”.
The dark web and how to access it
Software firm Hyperion Gray put together a map showing all 6,608 dark web sites crawled during January 2018. Each screenshot is a site, and the content ranges from the nefarious to the noble. There are a few websites like HaveIBeenPwned.com and Experian that allow you to look yourself up for free using an email address.
Links are but one method utilized in accessing the dark web, where clicking the link will automatically redirect you to a dark web site. Accessing the link alone can become a legal problem depending on the country you reside. Furthermore, accessing websites hosted by ransomware group hackers can make users a target, as domain providers can easily access IP addresses. Simply put, the deep web is the private side of the World Wide Web.
Not sure yet? Learn more about VPN
However, reliable VPN services don’t force users to browse at a snail’s pace to get secure online. There are many different ways to access the dark web, but navigating it can be tricky and dangerous if you don’t know what you’re doing. A VPN will give you an extra layer of protection and anonymity, making it much safer to explore the dark web. To access the vast majority of the dark web, you’ll need Tor. Tor is a network of volunteer relays through which the user’s internet connection is routed.
- It’s also imperative not to use the same password on more than one account.
- Sign up for ExpressVPN using your newly created mail address.
- People who click on malicious links on social media also freely share their personal information.
- For example, your company database would be on the deep web.
- The deep web is the first level beneath the “surface” of the visible web — and it’s significantly larger than the surface web, accounting for anestimated 96% to 99%of the entire internet.
- You can connect to the Tor network using the Tor browser, a custom web browser designed specifically to work with this network.
Would you like to know more about this search engine and how it helps to keep you anonymous while browsing? The deep web refers to all the web content that is not indexed by search engines. Most of the content on the internet is, in fact, part of the deep web.
Dark Web Onion Sites
The US government developed the dark web so that spies would have a place to communicate secretly. The US military developed the Onion Router, also known as Tor, and made it available to the public in 2004. By encrypting data at multiple stages, the Onion routing technology ensures that users remain hidden when browsing the web. Similar to the open web, the dark web is populated by groups and individuals that construct and run websites, not all of which promote or facilitate unlawful activity.
Most dark web websites have an .onion extension in the URL. These URLs are often very strange combinations of letters and numbers. For this reason many people use the Hidden Wiki or the DuckDuckGo search engine to browse the dark web.
Physically, it uses the Clearnet infrastructure but it can be compared to a virtual network with a special configuration. You cannot access it with a normal browser like Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox using a standard configuration of your ISP. Any encrypted network unavailable through a search engine and requiring a special software can be considered to be part of the Darknet. In most cases, it is encrypted by different protocols and that is why it provides great anonymity to its users. The surface web operates on the clearnet, which is secure and encrypted to protect users. The deep web uses the clearnet as well, but with ‘onion layers’.
Step 3/3: Install Tor Browser in a VM
You could be subject to additional scrutiny or even an official investigation. For this reason, we highly recommend using a VPN for the dark web. Tor will protect your identity to an extent, but combining it with a Virtual Private Network will make you truly anonymous. For speed and security, we recommend our sponsor ExpressVPN.