The Dark Web Revealed – What is the dark web, how to enter the dark web, how to access the dark web safely
Dark Web, Deep Web and Clear Web are different from each other, but they are different from each other. Of course, many people feel more mysterious about the dark web and want to know more information about the dark web, such as how to safely access the dark web, how to enter the dark web, where to enter the dark web, whether the dark web has a search engine and other knowledge about the dark web. This article is a popularization of the knowledge of the dark web, and a truthful revelation of the dark web.
What is the dark web?
First of all, we have to explain the difference between Dark Web, Deep Web and Clear Web.
The Clear Web is the first and visible layer of the Internet. Basically, this is the web content that we can search using various search engines such as Google, Baidu or Microsoft Bing in English and Chinese.
From a technical point of view, the explicit Web allows various search engines to index it and display its content. However, in terms of the entire Web world, the Internet only accounts for 4% of the entire Internet. So what are the other parts?
Deep Web vs Dark Web
The Deep Web is the content of the Internet that is not indexed by search engines. The Deep Web is not that scary, it represents the area that requires authorized access, it contains scientific papers from universities, medical records from hospitals, financial tax related statements, paypal or PayPal bills, internal announcements from the military, and so on. Although the content within the Deep Web is not displayed as an open site to the general public, it is still available to those with access if they want to find something.
Typically, people can access the content in the Deep Web through an account and password. For example, if your hospital medical checkup information is stored in the Deep Web, search engines such as Google or Baidu will not index it and you can only access it through your account and password.
The Deep Web is very large, accounting for about 90 percent of all Internet content.
So what is the dark web (also called the darknet)?
Let's make an analogy, if the explicit web is Google's best friend and the deep web is its secret lover, then the dark web is the evil freak.
The Dark Web, which makes up 6% of the Internet, is the most bizarre fusion of all. On the one hand, it is a cesspool, a gathering place for drug dealers, evil hackers, killers and human traffickers. On the other hand, because of its secrecy, it also acts as a liaison between the exiled and the people of the free world, and is used by many people who want to report anonymously, which may also be well-intentioned and simply wish to do so anonymously.
The dark web is popular with both groups because of its ability to make anyone and anything invisible. Privacy and anonymity are the core values of the dark web. The Dark Web does not have a parent server that hosts the entire Dark Web, but rather servers and nodes that can only be accessed through onion-type links. What is that onion (Tor Onions)?
Since all content is scattered across the dark web, there are no crawlers to aggregate the information together. Even the dark web URLs are completely different from what we used to commonly see.
For example, if you want to visit a site like YouTube, you can write the URL in your browser in the address bar (i.e., https://www.youtube.com) or use Google to search for the site. On the dark web, you can also type in https://www.youtube.com, but at a very poor speed. However, this is not the case with the web addresses of the dark web, where all dark web URLs contain a random string of numbers and letters, ending with a .onion suffix.
The Dark Web
Once again, it is a fact that the dark web is where a lot of criminal activity takes place. All the trivial details you hear in the news about the dark web are probably true.
It's where hackers sell data stolen from companies or individual users or provide other unseen services, and use bitcoin or other forms of cryptocurrency to trade. Not only that, but if one digs deeper, other creepy and horrific activities can be found, such as human trafficking, perverted websites, child pornography, torture or murder for hire.
The dark web is definitely a mysterious place, isn't it? However, since we are interested in it, we have to dig deeper, so let's go to the dark web now. However, there are some necessary security measures that must be taken before accessing the dark web.
Tutorial on using the dark web (how to safely access the dark web)
#1. Install VPN
When you are ready to access the dark web, you must use a VPN service. Why? From a legal point of view, of course. In principle, as long as you do not engage in any illegal activities, you are free to access the Internet. However, it may also be illegal to browse some inappropriate content on the dark web.
If the authorities detect your request for a Dark Web connection, they will have good reason to censor your computer. Therefore, to be on the safe side, download a VPN before opening the dark web. a VPN can hide your IP address. Your browsing content will be encrypted when tunneled through the VPN, thus hiding your network traffic and your ISP will not find out what you are searching and browsing.
#2. Install a proper browser
The first rule of accessing the dark web - never use the default browser. Popular browsers (e.g. Chrome, Firefox, Opera, 360 browser, etc.) etc. are all bright web browsers and cannot access content on the dark web. Therefore, I recommend you to download Tor Browser, which is by far the safest and easiest to use onion browser that can directly access the dark web.
How the Onion Browser works
Tor is an anonymous browser that protects data by routing it through a series of randomly directed nodes (or relays) that wrap it in multiple encrypted layers (like an onion), making it one of the most popular anonymous and secure browsers in the world.
Since the dark web itself is the dark side of the Internet, confidentiality and untraceability have become fundamental issues. Therefore, using an anonymous Tor browser is a must.
Always update and use the latest Tor Browser application. When using Tor, do not sign up for any services on the site using regular email. Although Tor is designed with anonymity in mind, providing a regular email address may still reveal your identity.
VPN and Tor should be used in combination to access the dark web
Congratulations! You have taken the first step on your journey to the dark web. Nevertheless, before opening the Pandora's Box of Internet wonders that is the Dark Web. Both VPN and Tor browser must be used. They must work together to keep you as safe as possible.
First, open a VPN, and then access the Tor Onion browser. This is the most popular and secure method of accessing Onion links.
When using this method, the Tor Browser will encrypt your request, which will pass through your ISP broadband provider unhindered. From there, it will pass through a VPN server that hides your IP and erases geolocation tags and other elements that could be tracked.
Next, your request is transferred to a Tor input point and then to one or more Tor relay nodes. From there, it is bounced to several Tor exit nodes. After that, your request is connected to the appropriate website. While a bit sounds a bit complicated, that's why it's by far the best way to access dark web content.
Of course, there are other browsers available besides Tor Browser.
I2P - excellent privacy protection and access to hidden onion links.
Matrix.org - is the same open source project as Tor. Great for IoT data transfer, chat and WebRTC signaling.
Orbot - Basically the Android version of the Tor browser for Android.
Globus Secure Browser - Tor alternative that requires a fee. It has a built-in VPN and allows users to choose a geographic location. globus offers a 5 day free trial.
Comodo Ice Dragon - Firefox derivative. Uses multiple protection measures to avoid malware.
FreeNet - Open source project. Uses Darknet and OpenNet anonymous browsing technology.
#3. Install virtual machine software or disposable OS
I strongly recommend that you use Virtual Machine Software instead of a locally installed Windows system to access the dark web. Why? Because it is easier to control the malware in a virtual environment.
It's like in the movie where the doctor has to study the deadly virus strain from under the glass hood. And, there is a lot of VM virtual machine software on the web including: Oracle VM Virtualbox, VMware Fusion and Workstations, QEMU, Red Hat Virtualization, Microsoft Hyper-V, Citrix XenServer, and Xen Project, etc.
Of course, there is another approach you can use. I call it the disposable OS, and it's easy to do. All you need is an 8GB flash drive (USB stick), an installation package, and you'll be up and running in minutes.
Let's take a deeper look at how to do this.
How to install TAILS OS operating system
Step 1: Prepare a flash drive, 8GB is fine, but a larger capacity flash drive is better.
Step 2: Download the installation package for Tails OS.
Step 3: Insert the flash drive and do a quick format. Be sure to use FAT32 to eliminate any compatibility issues. This process should be completed in a few seconds.
Step 4: Download and install Universal USB Installer or Rufus.
Step 5: Boot the USB or Rufus.
Step 6: Under "Step 1: Select a Linux Distribution from the dropdown to put on your USB", select Tails.
Step 7: Under "Step 2: Select your ubuntudesktop.iso", click the Browse button and select the downloaded Tails .img file.
Step 8: Under "Step 3: Select your USB Flash Drive Letter Only", use the drop-down box to select the letter that represents the name of your USB drive. If it is not displayed, check the "now showing all drives" option.
Step 9: Review the information and click Create when you are done.
Please note that the process may take 5 to 30 minutes, depending on your computer. You can take a break and wait for the installation to complete. When you are ready, click on the "Close" button and you are all set.
How to boot and configure TAILS using USB
The next step is to see how to start TAILS, which always takes some effort the first time. But it is not difficult, just follow these steps.
- Insert the USB drive into the USB port of your computer.
- Restart the computer.
- When the initial screen appears, press the corresponding Boot Menu key.
- Use the keyboard to select the appropriate drive name. When finished, press Enter.
- Wait for the Tails operating system to boot. Since this is the first time, it may take a while. Be patient.
- Configure Tails and enable Tor + VPN.
Ok, all set and ready to discover the dark wonders of the dark web.
How to access the dark web
If you have done all of the above. Now it's time to start accessing the dark web. At first glance, Tor Browser looks no different from a normal browser: it has a search bar, many quick launch icons, and an onion icon in the middle of the screen. Let's get started.
Although there is no "index" for content on the dark web compared to the explicit web, you can still use the dark web site navigation to find content on the dark web. For example, " Dark Web Directory" is the most popular URL navigation on the Dark Web. " Dark Web Directory" is a good place to start exploring the dark web. The dark web address for " Dark Web Directory" is:
In the " Dark Web Directory" site, each site navigation is followed by a short description to let users know what is available on the dark web. You try to choose the dark web sites recommended by the list of sites, from where you can also go to the list of scam sites.
If you want to gossip, you can always visit chat rooms as well. Services such as Random Chat can connect you with random people. There is also a Chinese dark web marketplace that can be accessed here as well, but what happens after that is all up to you.
In addition to " Dark Web Directory", you can also access some dark web sites through the dark web search engine. Here are some introductions.
- DuckDuckGo (https://duckduckgogg42xjoc72x3sjasowoarfbgcmvfimaftt6twagswzczad.onion) - you can find it through the Google search engine. The beauty of DuckDuckGo is that it doesn't track your searches, it's like the Google of the dark web.
- Torch (http://xmh57jrknzkhv6y3ls3ubitzfqnkrwxhopf5aygthi7d6rplyvk3noyd.onion) - is the first dark web search engine, Torch has a database of millions of onion links. It even comes with usage suggestions, and it has recommended sites like the infamous Silk Road.
- Ahmia (http://juhanurmihxlp77nkq76byazcldy2hlmovfu2epvl5ankdibsot4csyd.onion) - dark web search engine, the search comes up with all dark web sites, and some sites will with a description.
- Tordex (http://tordexu73joywapk2txdr54jed4imqledpcvcuf75qsas2gwdgksvnyd.onion)--Dark Web search engine (the content of the search is all dark web)
- SearX (http://searxspbitokayvkhzhsnljde7rqmn7rvoga6e4waeub3h7ug3nghoad.onion) - allows you to search for content on both the open and dark web. The advantage is that you can search for very specific content including documents, images, maps, music, news, science, social media posts, videos, etc.
- Daniel (http://danielas3rtn54uwmofdo3x2bsdifr47huasnmbgqzfrec5ubupvtpid.onion) - offers a collection of dark web links, with as many as 7000 dark web links that are are grouped into categories for easy browsing. In addition, it has a very useful built-in feature that lets you know if a particular site is online or not.
Please note that you should stay away from sites labeled "pornography", "credit card services", "PayPal hacks", "guns ", "fake IDs and passports". Once you seek to use these services, your personal information will be collected and used, and you will not be far from being arrested by the police.
Be careful and be prepared to eject your USB drive at any time.
There are many other categories of sites on the dark web, such as dark web marketplaces, email services, chat/social media, etc. We have copied some of them from offshore presentations, but without the access addresses.
Dark Web Marketplaces
Believe it or not, the dark web even has dark web marketplaces. Of course, they don't all sell drugs or guns. Some of them are reportedly legal and at a significant discount. For example, if you want to buy a laptop or a smartphone, you can try your luck at one of the stores. Of course, all transactions are anonymous and paid for by Bitcoin. Of course, you can also use other cryptocurrencies for transactions.
The main problem with these sites is that up to 50% of the items are fakes and there is no way to guarantee that they will be shipped to you.
Of course, you cannot use your home address to receive items purchased on the dark web and it is best to send them to a parcel drop-off point. They can ship merchandise to all parts of the world except for certain Middle Eastern countries and North Korea. I was tempted to buy an Apple iPhone 13 max pro on the dark web store for only $1500. My advice: look, but don't buy.
Some of the stores you can check out while browsing the dark web are
- CStore - offers all types of electronics. You can use cryptocurrency or gift cards to make purchases.
- Apple Palace - offers all products from Apple: laptops, desktops, phones and accessories. All at super low prices.
- EuroGuns - As the name implies: guns for sale in the European market. This site boasts that it is the number one arms dealer in Europe.
- Kamagra for Bitcoins - If the gun below you is not working well, you can try Kamagra Store, which offers cheap Viagra (Viagra).
- Gold & Diamonds - The site offers "fidelity" diamonds and gold. However, they can only ship to Germany and the US.
- PirateSec - Here are legitimate hackers at your service!
- Fake Passports - Self-explanatory, offering fake passports.
- SOL's United States Citizenship - Sells U.S. citizenship.
- Digital Gangster - Help hack into other people's computers. Hackers can be found here and hired to exploit vulnerabilities for cyber hacking, password cracking and surveillance activities, etc.
- Onion Identity Services - Sells personal IDs and passports. Bitcoin payments only.
Always remember that the dark web is a human-centric community. Therefore, it is necessary to use methods to stay in touch with your dark web friends or customers . You can use a variety of email and instant messaging services, and if you want to dive deeper into the dark web, it is highly recommended to choose one of these methods.
In terms of functionality, it is the same as regular IMAP, POP3 and SMT services, and communication on the dark web is basically similar. Let's start by signing up to use Dark Web email.
- secMail - the perfect email service. The design is very simple: you can compose, send and receive e-mails. The email client eliminates tracking, eavesdropping and other privacy violations.
- Lelantos - paid email service. Strong security and privacy features.
- Bitmail.la - another paid email client. Has many features such as IMAP, SMTP and POP3 support and a 500MB mailbox. Cheap too, with a lifetime membership fee of $0.60.
- Mail2Tor - A free email service that is said to work on both the dark and open web.
- Guerilla Mail - Create a one-time use email address.
- AnonInbox - Paid email client. Supports IMAP, SMTP and POP3; charges about 0.1 bitcoin per year.
- Protonmail - has paid subscriptions and free subscriptions. Has email technology that encrypts the browser.
Chat / Social Media
Now let's talk about social media and instant messaging on the dark web. Believe it or not, Zuckerberg's Facebook also has a dark web version. It's mainly used for secret communication, posting messages anonymously and such. Sure, it's not as secure as the open web, but it's perfectly legal to use it. The dark web version of Facebook is not the only social media client on the dark web. Below, I have listed the most popular social media clients for the dark web.
- BlackBook - works in almost the same way as Facebook: you can chat, send pictures and request friends, post status updates and join groups. The downside is that BlackBook is vulnerable to hacking. It has reportedly been disabled at least twice in 2018.
- Torbook - Very similar to BlackBook. Some people claim that although the founders didn't know each other, they both started offering similar services at almost the same time.
- The Campfire - Refers to sitting around a campfire while people tell stories. Suggests it's a chat room; everyone can participate and the topic can be anything from the latest trends in the music industry or how to hide a dead body.
- Lucky Eddie's Home - scripted chat room with one of the most efficient file upload systems on the dark web. Just like any application, you can send or receive messages, join or create groups and send files.
- MadIRC Chat Server - mainly used for secret conversations or network communication. madIRC chat works just like regular IRC - no registration is required. Just choose a username and join it. I recommend that you do not share any personal details, as you may never know who the other person is.
- Chat with strangers - just start the client and connect to the chat room. You cannot send or receive files. However, if you are lucky, you may be able to participate in a great conversation.
- Hidden Answers - The dark web version of Reddit. You can ask any question you like, without any censorship.
A few things to try to avoid when using the dark web
The dark web is in a dark world and there are many things such as hacking, drugs, and child pornography that can lead to fire and are to be avoided at all costs.
Viruses - Some sites can infect your computer with viruses, remember never to download any content from sites you don't trust.
Hackers - There are hacking forums on the dark web, and many people are looking to hire computer hackers for illegal activities. Hacking into other people's devices. This activity is illegal, try not to touch it.
Webcam hijacking - Sites on the dark web may attempt to install remote administration tools (also known as "RATs") onto your device. This can lead to your webcam being hijacked, allowing hackers to see what you are doing through your webcam. If you do not use your webcam, it is recommended that you cover it with a piece of paper or opaque tape.
Sharing child pornography images and videos - There shouldn't be a big problem with viewing such content, but don't download and store it - this is a serious offense in any country in the world.
Buying illegal goods or services - If you buy illegal drugs or hire a hit man, you could face arrest. But it's not illegal to browse sites that offer either of these things.
A few tips for staying safe on the dark web
We've already recommended using VPN, anonymous web browsers like Tor, and disposable operating systems when surfing the dark web, but here are a few more tips to increase security.
- Minimize or resize your Tor browser window
It is recommended that you use a minimized or resized Tor browser window for browsing, as hackers or governments can track you based on the size of your active window. Therefore, take extra care and rescale the Tor window as much as possible before doing so.
- Never use your credit and debit cards to make purchases
Try to stay away from dark web stores. Some of them may be legitimate, but you will be taking a risk. However, if you really want to buy a new phone, or anything for that matter, remember not to use your real name, credit card or debit card for such transactions, as if you do, your banking information can be used by hackers to steal your money in minutes. It is recommended that you use Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies to make payments. Bitcoin is a decentralized digital currency that is not affiliated with or settled by any institution and therefore cannot be tracked or monitored.
- Close TAILS when you finish your session
Don't forget to close Tails when you're done browsing or shopping on the dark web. the main advantage of using a live operating system (such as Tails) is that the OS wipes itself from the installed USB drive when it's closed.
- Enable anti-virus software
In the lawless dark web, there is much more malware than in the open web. Enable the real-time file scanning feature of your anti-virus program when browsing the dark web, which can help you check any incoming files, block any suspicious file downloads, and prevent your device from being infected by viruses.
- Curiosity killed the cat
Don't be curious about everything and try it all out. Remember that many criminal organizations are using the dark web to communicate or sell goods. Some of these dark networks are being monitored by relevant agencies. Therefore, if a dark web site looks dirty or has vicious violations, close the site and do not visit it again.
Well, you should have a general idea about what the dark web is and how to access it safely. Remember to always take all necessary precautions, avoid using debit or credit cards, and stay away from suspicious groups and things that are dirty and viciously illegal. If you have any questions or queries, please leave them in the comments section!
From：On DarkNet – Dark Web News and Analysis
Copyright of the article belongs to the author, please do not reproduce without permission.