Dark Web vs. Deep Web: What’s the Difference
Let’s take a simple look at the difference between the dark web vs. deep web?
Most people have probably heard the term “dark web” before, either on the news or in various movies or T.V. shows. It is often used as a catch all for all of the various illegal activities that can happen on the internet.
In addition, you may have also heard the term deep web or surface web. Is the deep web the same as the dark web? Are they both things you should avoid? This blog outlines the differences between the two as well as preconceived notions that may not be accurate.
What’s the deep web?
The internet as we know it today is divided into three sections: the surface web, the deep web, and the dark web. The surface web is pretty self explanatory, it’s the part of the internet that you access everyday. The surface web includes many of the news sites, free video streaming sites, and other public facing websites. The surface web only makes up about 10% of the entire internet showing you just how large it has grown since its inception.
So what is the deep web? Despite sounding shady, the deep web refers to the websites and applications that require authentication to access. This includes websites like Netflix, social media, online banking apps, or media outlets locked behind a paywall. The deep web usually contains things like personal identifiable information (PII) that you wouldn’t want out there for everyone to see.
The deep web protects things like medical, legal, or financial information that could be used for identity theft or other illegal activities. While you may not even know it you are accessing the deep web almost everyday!
What’s the dark web?
The dark web refers to a collection of networks and hosts referred to as “darknets”. Users on the dark web utilize tor, freenet, and other P2P networks to build the dark web. The dark web can only be accessed through what is called the “tor browser”. Tor, or the onion router, is browser that is utilized to provide protection of users identities when using the dark web. It hides users location, IP addresses, and other online activities to help protect individuals from the mass of cyber criminals waiting for them upon entry.
The dark web is often seen as something incredibly shady and used exclusively for illegal activities. While it is true, the dark web is primarily used for illegal activities including identity theft, drug sales, and the selling of login credentials law enforcement groups often use the dark web in order to catch criminals and disrupt cyber criminals’ online activities. Outside of law enforcement many whistleblowers or major corporations, journalists and activist’s may utilize the dark web to maintain anonymity.
What are the dangers of the dark web?
The dark web is a very dangerous place for users without the proper security measures in place. Many cyber criminals take advantage of the anonymity the dark web provides to sell or act on illegal services. On the dark web you may find individuals selling stolen login credentials, stolen medical information, or personal identifiable information including names, addresses, emails and phone numbers. The dark web often serves as a hub or black market for the trading and selling of private information.
In addition to information you can also buy stolen Uber accounts, stolen passports, ID’s are applications like Netflix or social media’s. The dark web also functions as a marketplace where cyber criminals can buy and sell different forms of malware and other software exploits. Often times bad actors will sell their particular brand of ransomware or malware as a service to other less experienced cyber criminals. The creator of the exploit either is payed up front, receives portion of the ransom, or some combination of both.
Dark Web Security
The best protection against having your data stolen on the dark web is to not access it in the first place. Navigating and interacting with users on the dark web requires extensive security and technical knowledge that if not applied correctly could lead to disaster.
Unfortunately, once your data is out there it’s out there. The best defense again data breaches is a preventative one. Proactive security is crucial to protecting your organizations private data so that it doesn’t end up for sale of the dark web.
Hope this gives you a general idea the dark web vs. deep and the security issue that are within them.
CorpInfoTech can make sure that your IT systems are up to date, patched and secure against the most technologically advanced cyber vulnerabilities. If you believe you’ve had a data breach, or just want to take preventative measures, contact CorpInfoTech today!
CorpInfoTech (Corporate Information Technologies) provides small to mid-market organizations with expert I.T. services including compliance assessment, cybersecurity penetration tests, and comprehensive business continuity planning services. CorpInfoTech can help organizations, quantify, create, refine, and mitigate the risks presented by business threatening disasters in whatever form they may be disguised.