The dark side of the internet, the infamous Dark Web. You can access it through a standard wireless or fibre broadband connection from Atlantek Broadband. Is Dark Web an urban myth, and if so, is there any truth to it? Learn the difference between the Dark Web and the Deep Web, what’s there, what to avoid and how to use it to escape without handcuffs and stolen bank accounts.
What is the Deep Web and how does it differ from the traditional Internet?
The Deep Web is a sea of information hidden in the World Wide Web, where search bots don’t crawl the pages.
The average user has access to only a small part of the World Wide Web. It can be compared to the tip of an iceberg rising from the sea: most of it is hidden underwater.
The Deep Web contains
the servers that form the technical backbone of the web gateways,
services that archive old versions of web pages,
the content of e-mail messages,
password-protected accounts: content accessible only to people with a username and password,
encrypted pages that can be accessed using special software such as the Tor browser.
What is a deepweb?
The terms “deep web” and “dark web” are sometimes used interchangeably. The dark web is part of the extended web. Traditional browsers, such as Google or Mozilla Firefox, cannot access it. Dark websites don’t show up in search results.
Darkness is part of the deep web. It is a collection of websites that can be viewed using special software. The most popular and oldest dark web browser is the Tor browser.
Darknet is essentially a code name for secret networks that are not only accessible through Tor, but also through many other programs, such as I2P (Invisible Internet Project) and Freenet.
Is it legal to use the Darknet?
Yes, in principle it is legal to use the darknet. The question is naturally in the details: what do you do when you enter the hidden internet? Selling and buying drugs is clearly illegal.
But the legal dangers of the “dark web” don’t stop there. On dark web forums, for example, you can find tips on how to cheat. Posting such advice can be considered incitement or aiding and abetting.
Darknet: How can I become a member? The Tor search engine and the dark web.
Getting started on the Darknet is not difficult. Use the free Tor browser.
Tor (The Onion Router) is a network based on “fraternal routing”. Messages sent from a user’s computer are encrypted on several levels. Finally, the so-called “outgoing node”, the data is fully decrypted.
Thanks to Tor, the user’s IP address remains anonymous. The sender is anonymous to the receiver.
The movement of data through the Tor network is similar to the behaviour of a professional spy following a check trail to locate or deceive a potential “stalker” – passing through various roads and locations before reaching his target.
Deepweb – How do you get into the dark? We show you in five steps.
Download the Tor browser installation file through you standard broadand connection as the one supplied by Atlantek Broadband : you can find it on the Tor Project non-profit foundation website.
Install the browser.
Configure the browser settings, e.g. select the security level (default, secure, most secure).
Enter an encrypted address, for example the address of the hidden Facebook service: facebookwkhpilnemxj7asaniu7vnjbiltxjqhye3mhbshg7kx5tfyd.onion.
You can use the Go Go Duck browser, which is integrated with the Tor browser.
Note that “normal” network addresses do not work on the Darknet. To find resources, you need so-called .onion domains (which are only available through Tor): the FB address above is an example.
No .onion address? The solution is to use one of the darknet sites, such as Torch/TorSearch.
What can you find on the dark web?
A few years ago, British researchers found more than 5,000 active sites on the darknet, and split about 3,000 sites into legal and illegal content. Analysis showed that more than half of them contained illegal material, with drug trafficking being the most popular.
Of course, the Dark Web is not just about cocaine traffickers.
Hubert Wojciechowski (“Darknet – Selected forensic, criminal and legal aspects of encrypted computer networks”) lists “a wide range of legitimate services such as e-mail addresses, search engines, instant messaging services, blogs, internet forums, internet radio, auction and news portals, websites offering financial services related to data storage or electronic cryptocurrency, etc.”.
Transactions and payments on the darknet
Anything can be bought on the dark web, especially products and services that are difficult to obtain on the unencrypted internet. These are mainly illegal goods (drugs, counterfeit money, passports and driving licences), illegally obtained goods (stolen credit cards) or goods that are difficult to find in official shops (weapons, certain medicines). Unfortunately, the dark web is also a place for the exchange of human trafficking and child pornography.
Of course, legal products can also be found on the dark web. Why do sellers put them on the dark web? One reason is that they want to hide their income from the tax authorities.
Cryptocurrencies are a popular payment method on the dark web, which essentially guarantees anonymity.
Transactions require mutual trust. How can this be achieved if the buyer and seller are anonymous? For example, by assigning recommendations and trust points to merchants, trust is created.
Be reasonable when using the dark web. For example, posts on most forums offering drug or hacking services are just a joke or a scam to the curious. The golden rule of the dark web is the principle of limited trust.
Is the dark web dangerous?
The simplest answer is yes, the dark web can be dangerous. In reality, it all depends on what you do on the dark web, what you search for and how you behave. It can be just as dangerous to give your credit card details on the ‘normal’ web.
For many people, the dark web is their salvation. Journalists, bloggers and ordinary internet users in dictatorial countries can use the Tor browser to access uncensored information and fight for freedom of expression and human rights in their countries.
The dark web is used by journalists who fear the consequences of disclosure. That’s why, for example, the New York Times has its own Tor address: the whistleblower can safely provide information to journalists.
The Darknet is also used by people who don’t want their online behaviour tracked by Google or other big online companies.