Tech

What is the Deep Internet, how to access it and precautions to take

The Deep Web (also called Invisible or Hidden) is the content of the Internet not indexed by search engines. This Deep Web not to be confused with the Dark Web, the Dark Internet that is included within it, but they are not the same. In case you are not familiar with these virtual worlds, as large as they are unknown to the general public, in this article we will update you on the basic aspects that you must know, how to access them and also the precautions that should be taken.

Concept and size

The concept of the ‘Deep Internet’ was introduced by Michael K. Bergman in the 1990s in a white paper titled “The Deep Web: Surfacing Hidden Value.” Contrary to what many people think, its purpose was not to define a hidden network intentionally, but what was commented above: to define content that cannot be found by conventional search engines for any reason, from password-protected pages to non-indexable formats because they are html content.

There is a lot of controversy with the size that the Deep Web can occupy in the entire Internet. Some authors calculated its size up to 500 times higher than the surface internet, although today, other analysts reduce it a lot after the explosion of social networks; the capacity of current search engines or the record amount of data moved by mobile devices.

One of the most precise studies was conducted at the University of Berkeley, with estimates calculating a hidden Internet occupation of 91,000 TeraBytes and more than 300,000 websites. something impossible to confirm by its own structurebut impressive all the same. The figures that are handled for this sub-world of the Internet are spectacular, although they have surely been reduced in proportion to the part of the Internet that we use daily.

What is the Deep Web

Deep Web Content

Movies and documentaries have made the Deep Web synonymous with the Dark Web and that is a wrong statement. But yes, since this is included in the first, it has led many detractors to consider the whole of this world as a shelter for criminals where any manifestly illegal product or service can be found.

Drug and arms trafficking; black market of all kinds; pornography that falls outside of any parameters that we may consider ‘standard’; pederasty; hitmen for hire; manuals for the creation of weapons or bombs; fake money; sale of exploits and contracting of all types of malicious development and/or attacks; software piracy; various mafias: terrorism and even organ and minor trafficking. In essence, everything bad from the physical world transferred to the virtual one, through darknets (darknets), restricted-access networks that are used primarily for questionable activities.

Certainly, by their very architecture, these underworlds attract the worst ilk, although it was not its original purpose nor the one of most interest to the majority of mortals. Some authors lower what these criminal activities represent in total and within internal sublevels of the Dark Internet itself, some without public access.

Fortunately, the Deep Web offers more than crime and in general, guarantees -certain- anonymity in the exchange of information, for example to users who have had the misfortune of being born in countries with dictatorial regimes. Also groups of ‘normal’ citizens who seek that anonymity and who join forums with all kinds of topics, which can be geeky, curious, alternative or specialized, but far from criminal activities.

Organizations like NASA store huge data from scientific research there and there are databases of all kinds that occupy a good part of the total. The Wikileaks organization began to offer classified documents with sensitive content on this network before even jumping to the general public and several of the massive services such as Facebook have mirror sites that allow you to use the social network in a more private way. Of course, there is no lack of all kinds of tools such as browsers, email clients or their own search engines.

How to access the Deep Web

Access to the Deep Web is not done in the same way as to the Surface Internet that we all know through a browser, mainly because of its encrypted url type http://kpvz7ki2v5agwt322(dot)onion. It is speculated that there are many more in the sublevels, but in any case their access is trivial for any user.

There are other ways of access, but the easiest and most used for a layman is through Tor, an Open Source project for distributed communications that seeks anonymity at the network level, keeps the information that travels through it secret and allows users to move around the Internet without leaving a trace. The TOR network is not designed to contain hidden material, much less to protect criminal activities, but to improve privacy, something that can be achieved theoretically, because achieving 100% anonymity in today’s world is impossible.

Tor Browser Bundle is the package that allows us to connect to the Tor network. It has versions for Windows, Linux, macOS and Android, which can be used both on the surface Internet and for access to the Deep Web. It is a tuned ‘Firefox’ that can be installed or used in Live mode from a USB flash drive and a flash drive. Beyond allowing easy access to the deep Internet, it must be said that its use has skyrocketed in all networks, especially after learning of the NSA mass surveillance scandals.

It is not possible to understand the operation of the Deep Web without Bitcoin, since the decentralized electronic currency and independent of central issuers is the official currency, the preferred means of payment and used for everything that the Invisible Internet offers, the good and the bad. Despite its detractors, insecurities and fluctuating value, Bitcoin is being used more and more and if you want to buy a product or service on the Deep Web you will have to have a wallet for this electronic currency.

Precautions to take

Access to the deep internet is quite easy using TOR as we have seen. But the chances of getting multiple upsets is just as easy for the reasons mentioned and for that Dark Internet included. Therefore, it is convenient to take precautions thinking about the following:

He access to the Deep Web is directly illegal in some countries like China where just uploading TOR lands you in jail.

Beware of file downloads. There is a high probability of ending up infected if you do not fully know where the downloaded file comes from and the pages visited. A good security solution, firewall and additional protection software is mandatory. Proxies, VPN… any type of protection at the network level is also welcome.

Anonymity is not total. Documents leaked by the ex-CIA technician, Edward Snowden, revealed the spying of the US National Security Agency on the TOR network, compromising computer equipment of specific users and thus being able to spy on their activities. Total privacy doesn’t even exist on the Deep Web. It is highly recommended to navigate through proxies and, if possible, from computers that you do not use for your normal Internet activities.

Be careful where you go, what you look for and what you do. The ‘Invisible’ Internet, and within it the Dark Web, includes the worst of the worst and although not everything is accessible, you can find directly vomitous images or videos. Moreover, all kinds of illegal activities. Where the criminals are are the security forces and it is not impossible to discover your real IP no matter how many precautions you use. Careful!

Avoid the dark web unless you feel completely safe and aware of where you are, differentiating dark networks from access to legal services on the Deep Web

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