Instead of a regular top-level domain, it will have a domain name ending in .onion, and it will usually also contain a random, frequently changing series of numbers and letters. Open your secure browser and make sure that it is fully updated. For the greatest level of security, avoid changing the size of your browser window.
The dark web is full of phishing sites, and there are many scams abound. Cybercriminals might try to steal your data, send you to fake websites, or hack your crucial accounts. Itâ€™s not wrong to assume is on the Dark Web. If your personal details can be found on web search engines, then theyâ€™re most likely available on the Dark Web, too. Itâ€™s unnerving to realize that other people treat your private information as a commodity.
Accessing the dark web on your desktop or laptop
If we continue to visualize the entire web like an iceberg, the open web would be the top portion that’s above the water. From a statistical standpoint, this collective of websites and data makes up under 5% of the total internet. Each node decrypts your data one layer at a time so it can be interpreted, then sent to your intended dark web destination. It’s from this process of ‘peeling’ off the individual layers of encryption, like the layers of an onion, where ‘the onion router’ gets its name.
It’s possible to buy and sell illegal drugs, malware, and prohibited content in darknet marketplaces. Some dark web commerce sites have dangerous chemicals and weapons for sale. In 2002, the dark web grew significantly when researchers supported by the US Naval Research Laboratory built and released the Tor network. At the time, the internet was still young, and tracking people was easy while staying anonymous was not. The Tor network was created to open safe communication channels for political dissidents and American intelligence operatives around the world.
This approach helps mitigate risk and reduce the chances of another security event occurring again. Suppose you take a proactive approach to security and take every step to protect your data, and you notice some lapses. In that case, your personal information is probably on the dark web.
- It’s also a great tool in hostile countries where freedom of speech isn’t possible.
- This would give them insights into yet-unknown vulnerabilities and allow them to gain knowledge of exploits before they can turn into widespread cyber threats.
- Web Hosting (yes, that’s the site’s name) allows you to run a Dark Website and includes essentials like Apache, PHP, MySQL, and a free .onion domain name.
- If you log into personal accounts on the dark web or visit websites with tracking scripts, then your activity may be tracked.
As it becomes a popular topic, the interest rises, especially for children. The image above is a generalization of the Dark Web, where anything and everything horrible and illegal takes place. A significant amount of nefarious activity takes place there, but this holds true for the Surface and Deep Webs as well. Joseph Cox wrote about this a few years ago in his article, “The Dark Web as You Know It Is a Myth,” and I agree with it word for word.
How To Get The Dark Web
Tor Hidden Wiki and The Hidden Wiki are the unofficial directories for the dark web. Be mindful that they may contain out-of-date and malicious links. DeepDotWeb has tons of useful information including news, tutorials, and status reports of top markets and forums in the dark web.
Here are two examples of dark web content and activities that would raise legal concerns. Some websites could infect your devices with viruses, and there are a lot of different types of viruses to watch out for. Remember to never download anything from websites you don’t trust. Before you get lost in the dark, be sure to educate yourself on the dangers of the dark web. Make sure you install and run strong security software on your computer and devices to help ensure the privacy and security of your data. Poking around on the dark web is where some people get themselves into trouble.
Conclusion: How to Get on the Dark Web Safely
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Everyone needs some space on the web sometimes and SecureDrop is exactly that. However, it’s a little more transitionary, since it was designed to allow whistleblowers a way to submit stuff to media companies anonymously. TORCH is a very simple and minimalistic search engine you can try out if you ever get sick of the friendly duck. Web Hosting services are more streamlined and aimed at those who want to build a Dark Web presence.