Q: What is the dark web?
A: The dark web is the deepest layer of the internet that isn’t visible to the average browser. Unfortunately, the it is full of illegal activities and crimes. Let’s take a closer look at the dark web and how you can protect your information from being snared.
What is the dark web?
The internet has been compared to an iceberg, with very little being visible above the surface, but it’s an enormous, dark and deep chasm underneath.
There are three basic parts of the internet:
- The surface web – all websites and landing pages that can easily be accessed through popular search engines and direct address entry using a web browser.
- The deep web – this includes private, but not invisible accounts, like social media pages, membership websites, medical records and more. All content on the deep web is safeguarded by a paywall or sign-in credentials.
- The dark web – can only be accessed by using special browsing software called Tor. Tor masks IP addresses and makes all visitors anonymous.
Not all activity happening on the dark web is illegal. The deepest part of the internet also provides a platform for communication and commerce for people living in countries that have heavy censorship of online activity.
Unfortunately, though, the dark web remains a hotbed of criminal activity. Loads of illegal trade takes place through the dark web, including drugs, firearms, counterfeit money, subscription credentials and personal information of thousands of targets. The inherent anonymity allows hackers and scammers to roam free without fear of being caught.
How can I protect myself?
- Enable two-step authentication on all online accounts.
- Regularly monitor your credit for fraudulent activity.
- Use strong, unique passwords for your accounts.
- Never share personal info with an unverified source.
The dark web is impossible to trace, but there are ways to protect your information. Use the tips outlined here to stay safe.