What is the dark web?

The dark web is a series of private networks that can only be entered through specialised software. The most prevalent software is called “Tor” (The Onion Router). That is why dark websites are reached using Tor end in “.onion” rather than “.com”.

This is your easy guide to the dark web, and how to defend your identity from being hijacked by criminals.

You’ve probably heard of the dark web. Identified as “back alley of the internet” or “the eBay of the underworld”, it’s a hotbed of unlawful activity – a place where people buy narcotics, credit card details and guns.

But what specifically is it, how does it operate, and how can you ensure your information doesn’t end up there?

The worldwide web: surface, deep and dark.

Below the surface of the internet is more than the average person knows. 

For the majority of us, the internet is whatever we can discover using search engines like Google and Bing – this is identified as the surface web. But the surface web is calculated to only comprise approximately 4% of all online content. So where is the additional 96%?

What is the Deep Web?

The deep web is under the surface web. The deep web carries all the content that doesn’t display up in search results, for example, the intranet that you use at work, your online banking account, and private government records. We work with the deep web constantly, though you may not recognise it. Each time you log in to an online account, you’re entering the deep web.

The majority of this content is perfectly legal but is considered classified so it isn’t intended for public access. This is why it’s hidden from the results of search engines.

But there’s more. Below the deep web is the dark web: this is the internet’s secret underside.

What is the dark web used for and why does it exist?

The dark web is a series of private networks that can only be entered through specialised software. The most prevalent software is called “Tor” (The Onion Router). That is why dark websites are reached using Tor end in “.onion” rather than “.com”.

When people use the dark web, their location and what they are looking at are hidden. It was developed by the US administration as a method to help their spies becoming untraceable. However, due to its anonymity, it’s shifted to a favourite place for criminal enterprise.

It carries dark markets, trading everything from drugs to people’s identities

Perpetrators use the dark web as a marketplace for peddling anything and everything prohibited and illegal: drugs, weapons, unlawful pornography, individual’s personal data, and much more. 

Nevertheless, it’s crucial to understand that the dark web isn’t only used for illegal activity. It’s additionally used by whistleblowers, activists and political protesters to address and discuss matters in secret.

If your information ends up on the dark web, you’re at serious risk of identity fraud

When a hacker hijacks your personal information (and there are many ways they can do this), the dark web is where it ends up being traded and probably used to perpetrate identity fraud.

While credit card details are the most frequently sold, fraudsters also sell logins to Netflix, Uber and Spotify account for as little as £5. Fraudsters will sell your social media account passwords, PayPal login and even online dating profiles.

Some dark websites concentrate on joining collectively all of your stolen items to create a full identify package. If a hacker has a full identity set with all your details and passwords, it could cost around £800.

When your personal details have been purchased, they’re then ready to commit identity fraud.

The effects of identity fraud can be shocking…

There are many ways they could do this: take loans in your name, opening credit cards, buying expensive goods with your money, or perpetrating other crimes and telling your name to the police.

The consequences of this can be extensive and devastating: your bank account could be emptied, your credit score could be destroyed, you could even be detained for crimes you didn’t do.

Fixing this brand of fraud can take up much of your time and money. Then there is always the emotional result identity fraud can have – victims frequently end up feeling alone, ashamed and fearful of using the internet again.

Using ChatmailECC, you can keep your identity safe

There are many ways you can limit the chances of identity theft happening to you. 

Even the most cautious people aren’t free from the potential of their identity becoming obtainable online, especially with large-scale company data breaches becoming more common and scammers becoming more sophisticated.

That’s why we created ChatmailECC: so your identity stays protected. ChatmailECC has multi-layered encryption that is so advanced it not only protects your identity from hackers, it protects your entire mobile phone before you have even turned it on. So no matter how clever the hackers are we are always 1 step ahead. Businesses small, medium and large are turning to encrypted devices to protect their clients. Encrypted phones are also suitable for the everyday person who wants to ensure their data is safe from the hands of criminals.

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