While the Dark Web requires using a special web browser to access anonymous websites, anyone can find information on the Deep Web through a regular web browser like Chrome or Safari. Unlike browsing the depths of the Dark Web, checking out sites on the Deep Web is just as safe as browsing any other website. Anytime you’re in the company of illegal drugs, illegal content, and other sordid online activities, you could risk landing in legal trouble. When you access the dark web, you’re not surfing the interconnected servers you regularly interact with. Instead, everything stays internal on the Tor network, which provides security and privacy to everyone equally. You probably check your email and your credit card statements online without worry.
You will have the option to configure it, or you can connect right away. You can take a number of steps to help protect your information. Make sure you change all your passwords, check your credit reports for any discrepancies, and inform your bank. You can also put a freeze on your credit to prevent it from being compromised any further. The dark web and the deep web are also often erroneously used interchangeably.
Accessing popular websites
Other dark web search engines include Not Evil, Torch, Haystack, and Ahmia. The subreddit r/deepweb is a good starting point for asking more experienced users about how to search the dark web and deep web for the content you want. Lastly, The Hidden Wiki is a collection of dark web links — but the links may not work and may lead to dangerous websites. Dark web browsing is not as simple as regular web surfing, but there are some tools you can use to chart your journey. Dark web search engines and forums like Reddit can help you find reliable dark websites, and you’ll need to use a dark web browser to visit them.
Something you can expect to see at any time on the Dark Web – seized websites. Web Hosting (yes, that’s the site’s name) allows you to run a Dark Website and includes essentials like Apache, PHP, MySQL, and a free .onion domain name. Here, buyers and sellers can conduct deals on a unified platform like eCommerce on the Surface Web. The only difference is that you will likely find more marketplaces on the Dark Web that offer illegal goods. Tor was originally developed to help safeguard US Intelligence online communications. In fact, even the FBI and the New York Times have a version of their website you can access only on the dark web.
When investigating online suspects, police typically use the IP address of the individual; however, due to Tor browsers creating anonymity, this becomes an impossible tactic. As a result, law enforcement has employed many other tactics in order to identify and arrest those engaging in illegal activity on the dark web. OSINT, or Open Source Intelligence, are data collection tools that legally collect information from public sources.
Is the Dark Web Illegal?
Tor’s security measures aren’t foolproof, but they’re pretty good. Keep in mind that if you use your real name, address, email address or other identifying information anywhere on the dark web, you’re giving away the protections provided by Tor. Be wary of buying services or products, even those that aren’t illegal, because the dark web’s anonymity makes it a haven for scammers. Be wary of sites that may infect your computer with viruses or other malicious software that could give hackers access to your passwords, or, say, your webcam. So, there are plenty of reasons to log on to the deep web, but are there legitimate reasons to seek out the dark web? To understand how Tor actually works you need to know what happens when you typically search the web.
Search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo are able to search and index websites because of links. They use links to rank search results according to things like relevancy, inbound links, and keywords. Regular browsers search the so-called “surface web,” but that’s where the search stops.
It’s also available on iOS and Android, and you can try it for free for seven days before making a financial commitment. As it encrypts your data, using Tor and the dark web can give your personal information an additional layer of protection from hackers. This makes it almost impossible to track your dark web activity from beginning to end. Don’t get Tor confused with a VPN though, which uses tunnels to protect your data from lurkers.
Sites On Dark Web
Any page that is non-indexable is technically also considered part of the deep web. It doesn’t have to require a login or contain sensitive data. Website creators and managers can mark pages as non-indexable if desired.
- Tor over VPN also doesn’t protect users from malicious Tor exit nodes.
- In 2001, they estimated the deep web to be around 400 to 550 times as big as the surface web which contains 4.5 billion sites.
- Like I2P, Freenet is a self-contained network within the network that can’t be used to access sites on the public web.
- Rule No.41 allows a federal judge to issue a search and seize warrant for any person who is using anonymity software like Tor.
- It can also reside in web archives, non-HTML pages, and so forth.
The dark web limits online tracking, and there are many legitimate reasons people like journalists and activists use the dark web to remain private. But there are also many illegal activities that happen on the dark web. And just like in real life, using the dark web for criminal purposes is never legal. Regular dark web visitors know that it’s possible to exploit the sketchy reputation of the space and the services offered. And though some dark web marketplaces offer user reviews, not all do.
That’s because digital currencies often provide a great deal of anonymity for people who buy and sell on the dark web. Use these methods to analyze dark web sites when necessary, all without installing the Tor web browser. On the other hand, Dark Web is mostly run on private server networks that allow communication only via specific means. This provides you a high degree of anonymity and makes it difficult for authorities to shut down.
As an example, you can browse products from online stores on the surface web. However, what you see and do on the site is limited until you log into an account — this is when you enter the deep web. I recommend ExpressVPN because it’s highly secure, superfast, and offers a combination of privacy features to keep you anonymous on the dark web. VpnMentor contains reviews that were written by our experts and follow the strict reviewing standards, including ethical standards, that we have adopted.