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What Is the Dark Web?

October 31, 2018

Some people think that search engines allow them to access all the websites on the internet. Do you think the same?

Google and other search engines don’t give access to all the websites on the web. They barely allow you to scratch the web’s surface. Below this outer surface lie the internet’s many hidden layers – those that cannot be found through ordinary search. These hidden layers are called the “dark web”. The name sounds intimidating, right? Let’s take a look at what dark web is and what you can find once you access it!

Dark Web

The web is divided into three parts. The first part is called the surface web which includes normal websites that can be found through search engines. The second is the deep web that includes websites that search engines cannot index or present in search results. Online banking sites are examples of deep web websites. The third part is the dark web. Dark web is completely different from the other two parts as it can only be accessed through specialized browsers.

Dark Web Users

Dark web provides complete anonymity to users, which is why it is popular among certain parties who wish to keep their identity hidden. This tool is used for illegal and shady activities like sale of firearms, drugs and child pornography.

Silk Road was the first black market on the dark web. It led to the creation of other black market websites. The authorities shut down Silk Road in 2013. The founder of the website was also arrested and sentenced to life in prison. Many similar websites are still operating on the dark web and authorities haven’t taken any action against them yet.

Dark web isn’t just used for nefarious purposes. It also supports many conscientious actions. For example, Edward Snowden, the former NSA employee and later whistleblower, exposed United States government’s mass-surveillance program by sending information to media outlets and reports through dark web. Dark web is also used by activists and journalists to avoid getting traced by people who would want to cause them harm. In some countries, users aren’t allowed to access specific social media platforms and websites. Dark web can be used to access those restricted websites.

Entering the Dark Side of the Web

Dark web is mostly accessed through a browser called Tor. Tor allows users to access sites on the dark web which have a .onion domain at the end of their web address. These websites are not accessible through normal web browsers.

In addition to Tor other browers like I2P or Freenet can be used to access websites on the dark web. Tor and other browsers enable users to access deep and dark web sites while keeping their identity anonymous. However, it is important to note that Tor won’t protect users from malicious content on websites. Therefore, you should be careful when accessing dark web sites through Tor.

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