Did you know that when you do a Google, Bing, or Yahoo search, only about 4% of the Internet pops up? Yes, even when search results show more pages than you have time to read, the provided information is only scratching the surface. This is precisely why it’s called the surface web.
But cyberspace has several layers. Right below the surface web is the deep web. Despite it’s ominous name, it’s nothing more than what we log into every time we use a password protected site: online banking, private email, work portals, government sites not available to the public.
And under the deep web, there’s what’s known as the dark web. This is where things start getting interesting.
What exactly, is the dark web?
If “deep web” sounded discouraging, the “dark web” sounds downright dreary. And it can be. A lot of illegal activity happens down there, considering that it is extremely hard to track down users and pinpoint their locations. This is because their IP addresses are scrambled and rerouted. So drug dealers, vendors of illegal firearms, and human traffickers have been known to use it as their playground.
But it’s not completely impossible to detect illegal activity. In 2013, the FBI tracked down the founder of Silk Road, a colossal online store with all imaginable drugs. The man was tracked down, charged with a myriad of crimes, and is now serving a life sentence in the bowels of a New York state penitentiary.
Legitimate purposes for using the dark web
Despite its inauspicious activities, some people do choose to install dark web software on their electronic devices for the sole purpose of being able to navigate the internet without being able to be tracked down. They prefer their anonymity, or are simply tired of hearing news about invasion of privacy, such as what was uncovered by Edward Snowden and WikiLeaks. It’s also a place where whistleblowers can give news tips to news sources such as The New York Times, who has made their website available in the dark web, or for dissidents in repressive countries to be able to access news sites and social media.
So now you know. Some people use the dark web to protect themselves from detection. For the rest of the population who still uses the surface web and needs to protect their data, there’s Soaring Eagle Consulting. Call us and let’s talk about what we can do to keep your business safe.