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What actually is the dark web?

On Behalf of | Feb 24, 2024 | Criminal Defense

For many people, it can be hard to remember a time when the internet was not so ubiquitous. Now, online activity permeates every aspect of life.

One area that concerned netizens may wonder about is the dark web. Discussions about this part of the internet often surround criminal activity. What is the dark web, and is using it illegal?

What is the dark web?

The dark web is like a hidden part of the internet that users cannot find with regular search engines and browsers. There, people can interact anonymously and do things like buying and selling items without other parties being able to trace the transactions easily. Since a person needs specific software to access the dark web, it is unlikely that someone would stumble onto it by accident.

Is the dark web illegal?

It is true that some people use the dark web for illegal activities, such as selling drugs or stolen information. They do so because it is harder for law enforcement to track and discover the identities of individuals on the dark web.

However, not everything on the dark web is bad. A person might use it for privacy reasons, such as communicating about confidential information. People can also engage in all sorts of innocuous activities and join groups on the dark web rather than the surface web because they enjoy an element of secrecy and exclusivity.

Still, those who use the dark web need to be particularly careful because it is possible to encounter dangers. Accessing certain information could violate federal law, even if a person does so unintentionally. Additionally, the lack of regulations on the dark web means it can be easier to download malware or run into scams.

What is the deep web?

The deep web and the dark web are not the same things. The deep web refers to any part of the internet that traditional search engines do not crawl and index. The information on the deep web includes private databases, password-protected websites and unlinked content.

The dark web can be useful for those who understand how to use it appropriately. However, as with other powerful tools, users can protect themselves by considering the risks and taking proper precautions.