You’ve probably heard of the terms Tor and dark web in the media. However, accessing these websites isn’t as dangerous as they appear. Actually, it’s easy to get up and running.
The dark web is a collection of websites that are not indexable by search engines like Google. It’s a part of the internet where data and content that would otherwise be private is stored. Email inboxes and Google Drive folders are stored on the deep web. They’re not accessible to the public when browsing with a standard browser.
There are numerous websites on the dark web that serve legitimate reasons. SecureDrop is one example. It is a dark-web website that allows anonymously submitting sensitive information by whistleblowers. There are also sites that allow users to purchase and sell stolen credentials, like credit card numbers and passwords. These websites are commonly referred to as “marketplaces” and some of the most well-known examples are Silk Road and AlphaBay, but there are lots of others which have been shut down.
The key to surfing the dark web is a network known as Tor which routes your connection through a series of volunteer servers that are spread around the world. This makes it impossible for anyone else to monitor your activity. Tor is so named because the traffic it encrypts is processed through a variety of layers similar to the onion layering on a pizza, which helps protect your anonymity.