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What is The Dark Web?

Many people have heard of the dark web before, but they have never seen it for themselves. This is because the dark web is a section of the internet that can only be accessed using a special browser.

For years many have believed that the dark web is a place just for cybercriminals and hackers. However, you may be surprised to find out that many government agencies and legal parties also use it due to its superior anonymity and security.

There is a lot more to the dark web than just illegal websites and marketplaces. It’s important to know what exactly it is because it will allow you to understand how it works. Read on to find out more about the dark web.

To put the deep and dark web into perspective, let’s use a visual analogy in the form of an iceberg. The web we all use daily is the surface web. This is what we use to access our email, access search engines like Google, and watch YouTube through standard web browsers like Firefox and Chrome.

Below the surface web is a much larger part of the iceberg called the deep web, which includes everything that standard search engines do not index. These are only accessible via Tor. Most of this material is not illegal and includes things like intranets, locked software, and content. Not to mention, paid applications and other data from large websites.

It is more like a big administrative storage room. The dark web is even deeper down the iceberg and constitutes a tiny part of the internet that can be very dangerous (mostly.) It contains risky material such as; drug sales, weapons, Wikileaks documents, and cybercrime marketplaces. However, it also includes things that are not necessarily illegal such as private communications, confidential files, rare books in digital format, and sensitive journalism.

The dark web is a section of the internet that is hidden away from the public eye in a sense. This is because the dark web can only be accessed with a Tor browser (The Onion Project). This is a special browser originally developed in the late 1990s by the United States Naval Research Laboratory. The initial development was made to allow spies to communicate securely without worrying about interception of their communications.

Eventually, the program was changed and repurposed into the anonymous browser (similar to Google or Firefox) that it is famous for today. Nowadays it is used to access the collection of ‘hidden’ websites and browse the internet anonymously. Anyone can download the Tor browser free of charge.

The Tor browser uses a random path of encryption through servers known as “nodes.” This allows Tor users to browse the dark web anonymously without anyone tracing their actions. This means that their browsing history is also not kept track of. Furthermore, websites on the dark web use Tor or another type of anonymous software such as I2P (Invisible Internet Project). This means that websites will also remain anonymous. You won’t be able to find out who’s running them or where the hosting is.

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