What is Deep Web & Dark Web: Everything You Need to Know
When you hear the terms Deep Web or Dark Web, there isn’t much you know but assume that both are somewhat similar. But, it’s not. The Deep Web and Dark Web are two completely things. If you have confusion too, don’t worry, lots of other people also have confusion. So today we have got you what you exactly need and also how to use TOR browser to access this web for anonymous browsing.
In this article, you will see what exactly is the Deep Web and Dark Web. And how they are different? Is it illegal to access? Can we access the Deep Web and Dark Web? And answers to many questions.
Table of contents
- What is the Deep Web?
- What is actually on the Deep Web?
- Is Deep Web Safe?
- What is the Dark Web?
- What’s On Dark Web?
- Is the dark web safe?
- Accessing the dark web with Tor browser
What is the Deep Web?
As the name clearly suggests- below the surface and not dark as it seems.
There are many search engines working on the web like Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, and more which has a task of searching and indexing the websites. Accordingly, rank the websites on the basis of the quality of content, relevancy, keywords, outbound links and, inbound links. These browsers search the “Surface Web”. The surface webs do not provide much of anonymous browsing.
For Example, if you want to find the stolen credit card credentials, you won’t be finding that on the surface web. This kind of information is available on the dark web. The Dark web’s data cannot be returned by the web browsers because there are no links on the dark web.
The search engines crawl the internet but traversing by visiting one web page, then by visiting the links on that web page and subsequently the sub links. This is how the search engine works and that is the reason why the contents from the dark web are not retrieved by the normal search engines.
What is actually on the Deep Web?
Anything and Everything which can be classified as personal and you wouldn’t want it to turn up on the web browser’s search results. the Deep web is practically invisible to the web browsers. This is why the users have an advantage of anonymous browsing. Here are a few examples which would help you understand the Deep Web-
- Personal Email Accounts
- Personal Card Details
- Online Banking Accounts
- Private Databases of Organizations
- Medical Records
- Legal Documents
96% of WWW is a Deep Web. It might actually surprise you to know that accessing the deep web is not illegal. You can always use a specific browser like TOR Browser, which will keep you anonymous while surfing the deep web. In fact, Tor, the most popular software for accessing the deep web was created by the US Navy and is still funded by the US Government. So accessing the hidden content on the deep web isn’t against the law but there are people who do illegal activities on the deep web.
Is Deep Web Safe?
Compared to the dark web, the deep web is like walking in your own neighborhood kind of safe.
You always do some routines like checking the bank statement online, purchase items with online payment which requires an input of valuable personal information like credentials without any worry. But that doesn’t exactly mean doing those routines has no risks.
For instance, your accounts on the deep web have a lot more information about you that you can anticipate which may be useful to the criminals. That is one of the reasons why it is always recommended to use strong passwords with a combination of letters, numbers, and special symbols.
If you want to surf the Internet on the public network (not recommended at all to use the public network), always use Virtual Private Network (VPN).
Check out our Article on Best VPN for Android Devices.
What is the Dark Web?
The Dark Web is a whole new different story and completely different from the deep web. People usually think that the Deep Web and Dark Web are similar but they are not.
Although sometimes according to the circumstances, the Deep Web & Dark Web terms have been used interchangeably, but the Deep Web contains mostly just harmless data and the Dark Web has definitely raised eyebrows about criminal activities.
Regular browsers like Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer can’t access dark websites. The main reason being that the dark web sites have the extension .onion and not like .com or .net or .org.
The Dark Web uses the Onion Router Hidden Service Protocol. “Tor” servers are basically undetected from the search engines which results in complete anonymity for the users while surfing the web. The Onion Router Hidden Service Protocol has high-level encryption which enables the publisher to be anonymous.
What’s On Dark Web?
Dark Web has the highest level of Anonymity. Dark Web is a small part of Deep web but it can be easily considered as the most dangerous part. The Dark Web has harmless activities as well as criminal ones.
They use onion routing: Check the image below for onion routing url
For instance, Dark Web may have a website which provides you with the Netflix Premium Account credentials and other Website may be known for its dark content.
The Dark content on the Dark Web can be as follows-
- Personal Information- Personal information of any person could be anything which can be used by criminals for any purpose with the wrong intention.
- Illicit Substances- Illicit substances are ones which are not easily available for any person. This includes drugs, chemicals, acids and so on.
- Items and Services- Items can be any weapon, technological element and services can be hire-to-kill, kidnapping, etc.
In short, Dark Web can provide you with anything you can Imagine for a certain price. This alone is a reason which tempts people to wander off on Dark Web.
Is the dark web safe?
Until you are just surfing and not wandering off in some wrong places where you shouldn’t be, you will be safe.
Here are a few safety issues to consider.
- Criminal element- When you surf the Dark Web, there is a possibility that you find an illegal website and they turn out to be hackers and exploit you (This was a very common case way back in 2017).
- Breaking the law- There are certain websites which are illegal to visit, and knowingly or unknowingly you may surf the website resulting in the breaking of the law.
- Suspicious links- This is just common, the links which redirect you to various pages and lands you into the trap.
- Law enforcement- Law enforcement officials operate on the dark web to catch people engaged in criminal activity. Like others on the web, law enforcement can do their work under a cloak of anonymity.
Even if with all the safety issues of the Web and you still want to surf it, then make sure to be vigilant and careful on which links to click.
Accessing the dark web with Tor browser
When you have read so many points before about the Web, you might think that getting into web must be quite difficult, but it’s not. Accessing the web is pretty much simpler, all you need is a specially designed web browser, TOR browser also called as an anonymous browsing tool.
The TOR browser works like any other browser but with anonymous browsing advantage. So all you have to do is install it, put the onion URL and hit the GO button to get the results.
However, it is not simple to search for any specific item on it as the websites do not have indexes and are not ranked like Google. So try searching the specific keywords and avoid using general terms for better results.
How to safely browse the deep web and dark web?
If you have to browse the deep web with an anonymous browsing advantage, then the first thing you should do is equip your device with some good Anti-virus software and VPN with TOR Browser. We did mention the necessity of VPN before, just emphasizing on it.
Here are some of the tips that we have curated so as to keep you safe and sound while browsing the web-
- Tor is known for providing online anonymity, so it can be effective for sharing sensitive information with family or reporting corruption or abuse.
- Keep Tor and Tor applications updated. Make sure your device’s operating system is also up to date.
- Don’t use your regular email on websites when using Tor. While Tor is designed with anonymity in mind, providing your regular email address could expose your identity.
Is Dark Web and Deep Web Misunderstood?
Frankly telling you guys, yes. Many people don’t exactly understand the concept of these two terms and often end up with the assumption that both these terms mean the same and they are bad.
The web is not the bad thing, some of its elements are illegal though. The deep web is a necessity that we can’t ignore. Deep web protects the private data to pop-up into the google search results which is for everyone’s benefit.