Once in a while, when you care to think about it, the enormity of information available on the internet might overwhelm you. However, what we can find on mainstream websites and through popular search engines such as Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc. is just a miniscule of the entire information that exists on the web. The reality is that most of the internet, approximately more than 90 percent, is deep web and dark web. Everything that we can find through mainstream search engines is just around 10 percent or even less of the entire web that exists. This is just like the tip of an iceberg and the majority of content is hidden from mainstream search engines. Deep web and dark web are not indexed by search engines, due to which they cannot be accessed through mainstream search engines and browsers. Another thing is that deep web and dark web are distinct from each other, even though there’s a tendency to use them interchangeably, especially among the uninitiated.
What is Deep Web?
Deep web comprises all the pages, databases and web services that are not indexed by mainstream search engines. Most of such information is encrypted and stored on servers that are password protected. These are not available in the public domain and access to stored files and folders is restricted. For example, your emails and bank account information is stored securely and is not indexed by search engines. These will be accessible only when you type in your correct username and password. Similarly, there are many websites, databases, applications and other resources that are not indexed and not available in the public domain.
What is Dark Web?
Dark web is a subset of Deep web and it comprises web resources and services that are available only through specialized browsing platforms such as TOR (The Onion Router), I2P, etc. Dark web is also not indexed by mainstream search engines and it is not available in public domain. While deep web comprises a good chunk of resources and services related to legitimate businesses, dark web has come to be associated with a significant amount of illegal activities. It’s like a large, anonymous black market, where you can find everything from stolen credit card details to automatic weapons, drugs, endangered animals, illegal porn, etc. However, dark web is not all bad, as it has alsobeen used to expose scams of people, businesses and governments across the globe. It is also the place where revolutionaries and rebels can communicate in secrecy. Dark web is encrypted, which is why it is favored by criminals, hackers, whistle blowersandeveryone else looking for some privacy and anonymity.
How to access deep web / dark web?
One of the most popular platforms that people use to access deep web and dark web is Tor. The good thing about Tor is that it is entirely safe and secure. However, caution is advised while accessing deep web / dark web, as there are hackers and criminals lurking in the shadows. Moreover, if you are found indulging in illegal activities, you might also be noticed by investigative agencies. Tor is encrypted and does not reveal your identity, but authorities may still find a way to track you down.
Exploring the deep web and dark web may be done for the purpose of gathering information and knowledge or to satisfy your curiosity. But if you indulge in illegal activities, you can never be completely safe. Do not click on links or access resources that you do not fully understand.