Beyond the Internet layer that we use every day, through common queries and search engines, there is the Deep Web. This part of the web, allows us to find all kinds of useful and relevant content but it is not always easy to navigate through it, it can be chaotic for someone who has never done it before.
If you do not know where and how to start or if you believe that everything is dark and dangerous, some of the links we refer on this article will show you that it is not like that and that there are pages and online services that have nothing to do with cybercrime and you don't have to be among the best hackers in the history to get into it and take advantage of what they offer.
WHAT IS THE DEEP WEB?
The deep web, invisible web, or hidden web are parts of the World Wide Web whose contents are not indexed by standard web search engines. The opposite term to the deep web is the "surface web", which is accessible to anyone/everyone using the Internet. The content of the deep web is hidden and includes many very common uses such as webmail, online banking, private or restricted access social-media pages and profiles, some web forums that require registration for viewing content, and services that users must pay for, and which are protected by paywalls, such as video on demand and some online magazines and newspapers.
Based on this, we could say that the deep Internet is made up of a set of websites and databases that common search engines cannot find since they are not indexed in any of them. Therefore, the content that we can find is very broad. Specifically, the Deep Web contains all the content on the Internet that search engines have not indexed or could not find.
WHAT DO WE FIND ON THE DEEP WEB?
Myths often say that the Deep Web is dangerous and dark but the reality is far from this. It is not a dangerous place although it can be somewhat chaotic or messier than what you usually do with indexed results when you search on Google.
As we just mentioned, beyond what you may have heard, on the Deep Web there are all kinds of information about technological and scientific advances and documents and resources of all kinds, especially practical for studies, work, or research ...
Although, of course, we will also find arms markets, drug sales, markets and sale of false documentation, classified books, or pornography and it is usually an anonymous place less "welcoming" than we are used to.
Therefore, on the Deep Web, we can find almost everything, from pages like those that we can find on the Internet through any search engine, to websites that are dedicated to all kinds of illegal practices. Below are some of the types of services, websites, or platforms that we can find in the Deep Web:
- Content distribution websites: In them, we can download ebooks and other types of content and media. Many of them are free of rights, although we can also find many others with copyright and that offer their download illegally.
- Censored content: The usual search engines or search engines have the right to restrict or block certain content according to their own rules. Therefore, all those who want to publish certain restricted information, censored files, or try to incite the support or performance of certain activities or thoughts, usually go finally to the Deep Web.
- The Hidden Wiki: As its name suggests, it is the particular Wikipedia of the deep Internet and from which we will be able to find all kinds of content.
- Black market: On the Deep Web we can find different websites that sell stolen things, weapons, false documentation, and even drugs.
- Sexual exploitation and pornography: We can find all kinds of pornography without any limit and even websites that are illegally engaged in trafficking in women, exploitation, child pornography, etc.
- Hosting services: There are several hosting services that we can find in the Deep Web and that allow us to host all types of files regardless of their legality or illegality.
- Hackers: Hackers have no shame when it comes to offering their services freely to all those who require their help to achieve certain objectives, even if they cross the line of legality to do so.
- Scams: However, when we browse the web we must exercise extreme caution to avoid being infected by malware or being the victim of some scam, when we enter the deep Internet the scams multiply exponentially. We can find all kinds of scams and techniques with which they will try to deceive us and run into serious problems.
- Anonymous mail services: Anonymity is one of the pillars of the Deep Web, hence we can find numerous mail services that offer the possibility of creating an account to send or receive messages anonymously.
- Cryptocurrencies and financial services: Almost for any type of transaction we will need to have cryptocurrencies since it is the payment method used in the Deep Web. Besides, we can find sites where Paypal accounts or stolen cards, cloned credit cards, etc. are offered.
THE SEARCH ENGINES
DuckDuckGo is the default search engine for Tor Browser and a good option available for the Internet as well. Besides, DuckDuckGo has a .onion version that allows you to access it anywhere. Its main advantages are that the interface will be familiar to us thanks to the fact that it is practically identical to Google.
The Hidden Wiki
To start from scratch, one of the best links in the Deep Web is The Hidden Wiki. A directory with which you will have access to the main links, pages, services, or options present in the Deep Web and with all kinds of organized and hierarchical topics. The Hidden Wiki is a collaborative project and you can find from false documentation or stolen PayPal accounts to information to improve privacy, etc.
Searches markets only for labor, digital, and physical items you can purchase with Bitcoin and other currencies. For the black market, Grams it is one of the best links for the Deep Web if you want to search for buying and selling pages. It is specifically intended for this type of content.
The website Kilos is the new meeting point to search for purchase and sale pages. In less than 4 months it is estimated that Kilos has indexed more platforms and functions than Grams had in its entire life cycle. The search options are very complete and allow us to carry out searches indicating the minimum and maximum value and which currency we want to use. We can also select different sort criteria by filtering by price, relevance, supplier, market, etc.
A search engine with a design that as soon as we enter will attract our attention. Ahmia mission is to create the premier search engine for services residing on the Tor anonymity network. Contributors to Ahmia believe that the Tor network is an important and resilient distributed platform for anonymity and privacy worldwide. By providing a search engine for what many call the "deep web" or "darknet", Ahmia makes onion services accessible to a wide range of people, not just Tor network early adopters.
A highly customizable, meta-search engine. This means it queries dozens of other search engines simultaneously to produce the best possible results. Searx is a free Internet meta-search engine that aggregates results from more than 70 search services. Users are neither tracked nor profiled. Additionally, searx can be used over Tor for online anonymity.
TorLinks is a directory from which you can access different links on the Deep Web where you can find information on any topic that interests you. It is similar to The Hidden Wiki if you want to search for web pages on a specific topic. TorLinks is a moderated alternative to The Hidden Wiki and serves as a link or URL list of Tor hidden services.
A database of over 5,000 .onion services with the mission to create tools for those looking for onion sites. VisiTOR is continuously expanding and improving the site to become a meaningful resource in the Tor network. The site started as a fork of the Ahmia search engine, this will remain a core part of the site, but we will expand it in new directions.
SECURITY AND PRIVACY
GnuPG is a complete and free implementation of the OpenPGP standard as defined by RFC4880. GnuPG allows you to encrypt and sign your data and communications. It features a versatile key management system, along with access modules for all kinds of public key directories. GnuPG, also known as GPG, is a command-line tool with features for easy integration with other applications. A wealth of frontend applications and libraries are available.
A London-based charity that challenges government powers by advocating for strong digital protections and human rights. Privacy International pretend to help to protect democracy, defend people's dignity, and demand accountability from institutions who breach the public trust.
This website offers how-to instructionals to help users install and use the essential digital security software and services. The Tactics Guides of Security in-a-Box cover basic principles, including advice on how to use mobile phones and social media more safely. The Tool Guides offer step-by-step instructions to help you install, configure and use some essential digital security software and services.
SOCIAL NETWORKS AND FORUMS
We have all used Yahoo Answers at some time to find something or deepen on a specific topic. Hidden Answers is the same but made for the Deep Web where users ask all kinds of questions on any topic that comes to mind.
Connect is a social network that states to be where users can freely talk about whatever they want regardless of their ideology. According to Connect users will be able to discuss things that they normally could not and talk about problems that are often overlooked in public media.
Smuxi is an open-source, powerful, flexible, and user-friendly chat client created by Mirco Bauer and developed by other contributors. Inspired by the combination of screen and IRSSI, Smuxi has a detachable server that stays connected when you aren't and can allow multiple Smuxi frontends to be connected and in sync. This is similar to screen+irssi or IRC bouncers, but more elegant and powerful.
We're not going to write down what Facebook is because we're sure you already know it. But did you know that Facebook is also present on the Deep Web? There is a version of this social network accessible from Tor and offering the same options as its public version.
This is the official TPB forum do you know it? The Pirate Bay forum sometimes abbreviated as TPB is an online forum of digital content of entertainment media and software.
The Hub is a forum focusing on topics such as drug market discussions, news, and operational security guides created by anonymous individuals. The Hub forum was launched in January 2014 as a more secure, verifiable, and discreetly moderated alternative. Vendors must be verified before getting a vendor status on the forum.
This is another forum for drug market discussions and reviews. DNM Avengers also knows as Darknet Avengers is a darknet forum accessible via the Tor network, on which users can participate in discussion threads. It is a fairly popular forum on the darknet, after Dread and The Hub.
Mail2Tor is a free anonymous e-mail service to protect your privacy. It allows anyone to send and receive email anonymously via webmail or with an email client. Mail2Tor service is focusing on allowing us to send or receive messages while maintaining our privacy and anonymously.
Confidant Mail is an open-source non-SMTP cryptographic email system optimized for large file attachments. It is a secure and spam-resistant alternative to regular email and online file drop services. Confidant Mail is the easiest way to use PGP encryption. You can download and install the software and start using it in a few minutes.
A modern web client with integrated PGP encryption features that makes securing email communications simpler. Mailpile is an effort to reclaim private communication on the Internet. A project to rescue our personal lives from the proprietary cloud and prevent our conversations from being strip-mined for corporate profit and government surveillance. Mailpile is taking the e-mail back.
An open-source and easy-to-use email client with a modern web interface. All emails between ProtonMail clients are automatically encrypted. ProtonMail is supported by more than 10,000 individuals from around the world who participated in the record-breaking crowdfunding campaign.
Riseup is a Seattle-based collective that supports freedom of expression and combats oppression. The Riseup email service is accessible using the Tor network. The purpose is to aid in the creation of a free society, a world with freedom from want and freedom of expression, a world without oppression or hierarchy, where power is shared equally.
Most .onion services disappear within hours of being spotted. This is part of what makes .onion services unique and powerful for people who need to quickly share information anonymously. It's also what makes .onion services terrible for anyone seeking reliable, legitimate content.