Now, let me quickly educate you on something here. You all know of this thing called the World Wide Web, right? I mean, you are practically using it right now to read this very blog article!
But did you know, that there is also this thing called the Deep Web, and this other thing called the Dark Web? Sounds ominous doesn’t it?
Well, this photo basically sums up to you what the 3 different layers are.
But that aside, let me just explain it a bit more for you.
Inside the Deep Web
What is the Deep Web?
The Deep Web refers to any website that cannot be readily accessed through any conventional search engine such as Google or Yahoo! Search.
The reason for this is because the content has not been indexed by the search engine in question.
Confused? Basically, in layman’s terms, the Deep Web is just another ‘level’ of the internet. Residing below the “surface”.
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”.
What is available on the Deep Web?
So what is available? Well, the hidden world of the Deep Web contains a plethora of data, information, and a wealth of possibilities, including anything behind a paywall or requires sign-in credentials. It also includes any content that its owners have blocked web crawlers from indexing.
This also includes but not limited to the following:
- The internal sites of major companies, associations, and trade organizations
- The school, college, and university intranet systems
- Access to online databases
- Password-protected websites with members-only access
- Paywall enshrouded pages
- Timed access pages such as those found on online test-taking sites
- Circumventing paywalls for blocked digital content
- An individual’s personal account for social media, email, banking, and more
Ok, but Deep Web aside. Let’s move on to the Dark Web now shall we?
Inside the Dark Web
What is the Dark Web?
Known throughout the world as the Dark Net, the Dark Internet, or most commonly, the Dark Web, this corner of the internet lies within the deepest points of the internet abyss.
The dark web is a part of the internet that basically isn’t indexed by search engines.
You’ve no doubt heard talk of the “dark web” as a hotbed of criminal activity — and it is. Researchers Daniel Moore and Thomas Rid of King’s College in London classified the contents of 2,723 live dark web sites over a five-week period in 2015 and found that 57% host illicit material.
A 2019 study, Into the Web of Profit, conducted by Dr. Michael McGuires at the University of Surrey, shows that things have become worse. The number of dark web listings that could harm an enterprise has risen by 20% since 2016. Of all listings (excluding those selling drugs), 60% could potentially harm enterprises.
What is available on the Dark Web?
The Dark Web remains incredibly attractive to internet users for a wide range of reasons. The enshrouded nature and complex methodology required to access this world have effectively made it a secret world, full of salacious activity, black markets, sights, and perks limited to a select few.
Curious to what you can find on the Dark Web? Well, here’s some of the many things:
- Stolen credit card numbers
- Fake passports
- Stolen/ hacked accounts
- Bitcoin Lottery Tickets
- Fake coupons
- Fake college degrees
- Ricin and other poisons
- 3D printing services
- A pocket-style EMP Generator
- Plastic explosives
- Social security numbers
- Drugs/ narcotics
- SWAT-style body armour
- Hacked government data
- Luxury goods counterfeit and replica market
(But this does not mean that the Dark Web is just used for bad activities. I mean, the regular surface World Wide Web also houses bad things. It’s just that due to the relatively inaccessible nature of the Dark Web, it does tend to attract the more shady and illegal activities.)
How much do people pay to use the Dark Web?
Now here is the question everyone who clicked on this blog posts is curious bout – how much do people pay to use the Dark Web?
Well, wait no longer! Here is what people pay on Average (USD):
- Credit / Debit Card information $636.90
- Bank account information $259.56
- Passport / Driver License $62.59
- Games Account $11.63
How to Stay Safe from the World Wide Web, the Deep Web, and the Dark Web?
The basic rule is this – guard your data well. Don’t just think that because you are not using the Deep Web or the Dark Web, that your data is safe. Because any mistakes you make on the surface web (or World Wide Web) will just be as bad and public for any hacker to pick it up.
Be careful what data permissions you give (don’t just mindlessly click ‘yes’ on every pop-up just to get to a website). And follow these simple things:
- Install updated antivirus software on your computers and update your software when prompted to do so.
- Don’t open unsolicited business emails or attachments that come from unfamiliar sources.
- Look closely at the URL address of a website. Malicious websites may look identical to a legitimate site (e.g. www.evantagetechnology.com – note the “-” is missing from the link)
- Manually type the URL address of a website rather than clicking a link. Typing in the accurate URL is a simple way to negate a host of attacks.
- Where available, enable multi-factor authentication.
- Be mindful when entering your personal information online.
- Be careful when using public WiFi
- Use a strong password, and use different passwords for different accounts
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