There are many misconceptions about the dark web and what goes on in the digital underground. Though the dark web is usually associated with criminal activities including drug dealing, human trafficking, selling counterfeit consumer goods and many other malicious acts, not everything in the dark web is completely dark.
Many questions are frequently asked about the dark web and to further understand it here are some of the greatest myths and truths to help answer them.
Myth: The deep and dark web are the same thing.
Truth: The dark web is classified as a subset of the deep web, but to state that the deep web and dark web are the same thing is an incorrect understanding of the two terms. The deep web refers to content that cannot be easily accessed through search engines since the content is not indexed like information over the surface web. Deep web content can include items such as forums, password protected websites and subscription information to name a few. Meanwhile, the dark web requires the utilization of browsers such as Tor or I2P to access.
Even though both the dark web and the deep web can host very similar content, it is important to note the distinction between the two since the manner in which data is gathered from these sources is very different.
Myth: The dark web is impenetrable.
Truth: The dark web can be accessed through special networks such as Tor, I2P and Freenet. These networks protect the privacy of the user by concealing their IP address and all their online activity is kept anonymous. This anonymity is accomplished by routing user’s data through a large number of intermediate servers, providing layered encryption to the user.
Myth: The dark web is full of malicious activity.
Truth: Yes, you will find illegal activities on the dark web, but this is not the only use for a platform that provides the user anonymity. For example, countries where there is high internet censorship a platform like TOR can provide the user to access to content that they may not be able to gain access to. The dark web can also be a tool for journalists or other seeking to pass on sensitive information safely.
Why should you care about the dark web?
Just as any website on the Internet can be used to trade confidential/insider information, sell hacked accounts, commit credit card fraud, identity theft and other illicit activities, through the use of the dark web malicious actors can post or search for this information anonymously. Knowing what is out there is a crucial step to protect your brand and even yourself from becoming a victim to dark web crime.