The web is a much bigger place than you can even imagine. We use portals like Google, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Amazon, and sites like these on a daily basis. But, do you know there is a dark side of web lurking beyond these often used websites? The Dark Web and the Deep Web is a very shady place, to be honest. You can access these kinds using Tor, but the question is how and also do you even want to visit the Dark or the Deep web? We are giving you a quick tour of the Dark Web and the Deep Web which will help you decide on your own while explaining the difference between the two.
What is the Dark Web?
The Dark Web refers to a collection of websites which can’t be found through traditional search engines or browsers. It exists on an encrypted network. These websites hide their identity using the Tor encryption tool. You might be familiar with Tor which is famous for the ability to hide your identity and activity. Tor is also used if you want to spoof your location. With the help of Tor, you can even show a different country from where you’re actually located. This is like using a VPN service. When you run a website through Tor it has more or less the same effect. In fact, it multiplies the effect.
For visiting a site on the Dark Web which uses Tor encryption, all you need to do is to use ‘Tor’. The end user’s IP address bounces through various layers of encryption for appearing at another IP address on the Tor network, and the same applies to the website. So, basically, there are different layers of magnitude and much more secrecy than the already secret act of using Tor for visiting any website on the open web. This means, anyone can visit or surf the Dark Web but it is extremely difficult to know who is on these sites. Also, it is dangerous because if you’re not a pro and you make a mistake, your identity might get revealed.
What is the Dark Web used for?
The first thing you should know is that not all the Dark Web sites use Tor. Some of the websites use similar kind of services like I2P. However, the visitor has to use the same encryption tool for knowing where they can find the site and things like typing in the URL to visit the site. An example of the Dark Web site is the Silk Road which was or maybe still is a website which is used to buy and sell drugs and also more scary things.
However, as I mentioned before, the Dark Web also has some legitimate uses. Users who live in closed societies can use the Dark Web for communicating with the outside world. Now, as the government is intruding our web space, you might feel it is sometimes sensible to do the personal communication on the Dark Web.
Back in March 2015, the UK government rolled out a dedicated cybercrime unit for tackling the Dark Web. It’s main motive was to particularly focus on cracking down on child pornography and serious crime rings. In fact, the UK intelligence outfit GCHQ and the National Crime Agency (NCA) are creating together the Joint Operations Cell (JOC).
What is the Deep Web?
People often confuse between the Dark Web and the Deep Web, but both are actually very different from each other. The Deep Web consists of all the websites and pages that can’t be found through search engines. We can easily say that the Deep Web includes the Dark Web. However, it also includes pages behind paywalls, all user’s database, registration-required web forums, and webmail pages. There are a lot of pages like this and most of them have no reason of existence.
There is a staging version of all the websites which have been blocked from being indexed by search engines so that the stories can be checked before it is set live. This means that for the millions of publicly available web page, there is one more on the Deep Web. In online banking, the password protected bits are on the Deep Web. All of us are aware of how many pages one Gmail account can generate, just imagine the size of the Deep Web.
What is the Dark Internet?
We’re mentioning the Dark Internet here because people confusingly use this term to describe further types of networks, websites and even databases which are difficult to reach on the internet. The sites can’t be reached on the internet because of the properties containing niche information or any other technical reasons. Also, the reason can be that sometimes only a few people will want it or the data is private. One thing to remember is, while the Dark Web and the Deep Web are mostly used for referring to dangerous and explicit secret online words, the Dark Internet is a boring place which is used by scientists for storing raw data for research.
How to access the Dark Web
As we already mentioned, it is not a very difficult thing to do. All you need to do is simply install and use ‘Tor’. Let’s understand the installation of Tor step by step:
- Go to www.torproject.org
- Download the Tor Browser Bundle – this has all the required tools
- Run the downloaded file
- Choose an extraction location
- Open the folder
- Click Start Tor Browser
Voila! You’re all set to use Tor now! Furthermore, the Vidalia Control Panel will be handling the randomized network setup automatically. Also, when Tor is ready, the browser will open; just close it again for disconnecting from the network.
To be Noted:
We have no idea what you’re intending to do on the Dark Web. But, just to be on the safer side, it has been recommended to place a tape over your laptop’s webcam. This is for preventing prying eyes that might be watching you. One more option is a tinfoil hat.
People generally don’t know where and what to look on the Dark Web. Don’t expect us to tell you that as well. We leave you right here, to your own devices and explorations. We can just wish you good luck and safe surfing. However, we do want to warn you before you take any further step. Once you enter into the Dark Web, you will be accessing sites which the tabloids refer. This also suggests that you’ll just be a click away from sites who sell guns, drugs and trust me even worse things. Sites like Reddit and various Wikis offer a list of links that can be surfed on the Dark Web.
Browse to http://thehiddenwiki.org/, which offers a list to access some of the very bad places. There’s no harm in taking a quick look by all means, but please don’t take this as an endorsement from us. We are definitely not endorsing it!
The Dark Web sites go down from time to time, because they are so dark in nature. If you are looking forward to a good customer service, staying out of the dark is the only option you have!
WARNING: This article is intended as a guide to what is the Dark Web and the Deep Web explaining the difference between the two. It is by no means an endorsement or encouragement for readers to get into any immoral or illegal behavior.