Dark Web, Deep Web, Surface Web: What Is The Difference?

dark web

WWW, or the World Wide Web, is what makes us learn about everything and anything. But, it is a big mystery itself. There are many things that we don’t know about the web.

The dark web is one such aspect of the web. As to Tor, only 3% of traffic is directed to the dark web, according to the Anonymous Traffic Classification research

If you’re also ignorant about the dark web and how to access the dark web, this post is going to help you a lot.

Dark Web Vs. Deep Web Vs. Surface Web: The Difference

For a better understanding of the dark web, spotting the difference between these three terms is crucial. So, let’s get started:

What is Surface Web?

The surface web is that part of the internet available to the common public and accessed easily using common browsers such as Safari, Firefox, and Chrome.

We are sure that you’re reading this post on the surface web only. Websites and activities available on the surface web are legally conducted and monitored continuously. It is properly regulated. Whatever you search on Google or other non-dark web search engines and get a search result is a part of the surface web.

What is Deep Web?

What is behind the curtains, after the surface web, is known as the deep web. By this part of the internet, we mean a group of pages, databases, and content that you can access via a particular part of the group.

This is the largest part of the internet and is supposed to make up 90-95% of WWW. This is useful for accessing the work database. For instance, when you’re browsing Amazon as a customer, you will be able to see available products.

But, when you log in as a seller or administrator, you will be able to find out the hidden picture. For instance, which product sells faster, from which website traffic is generated, and the like information can be gathered using the deep web. Accessing the deep web demands a full URL address and username or password (in some cases).

Google or other search engines do not access the deep web. It needs a specialized browser.

It doesn’t mean anything scary or nefarious. Furthermore, it simply signified the un-indexed or protected database and web content.

What is the Dark Web?

At last, the dark web comes. Do you remember watching the horror film ‘Unfriended dark web’? Most of us hear about this area of the internet through dark web movies.

The dark web is a small fraction of the deep internet that is not easily accessible. Search engines do not index data web links. It won’t be accessed using famed search engines like Google Chrome, Bing, or Mozilla Firefox. A particular dark web browser, like Tor, is required to access this super-secret part of the internet.

Because of a massive pile of illicit material, such as dark web porn, available on this part of the internet, it is considered a shady and dangerous face of the internet. So, this is something that you should be worried about.

Activities like drug selling, hiring a hitman or hacker, and buying illegal weapons are conducted openly on the dark web. Websites or companies using the dark web take the help of a VPN to hide their location and gain the confidence to do whatever they want to do.

But, dark web websites are not always malicious or scary.

Even ordinary citizens, who want to share their thoughts or communicate without any fear, can take the help of the dark web. There also are intellectual dark web enthusiasts who explore this virtual place for learning and research.

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Dark Web: What Potential Threats Are Hidden There?

Now, you must be thinking about why people access the dark web even if it is so risky and outlawed to use. Well, the Dark Web is like a double-edged sword. While it has become an ideal place for illegal activities, it has also helped organizations have secure communication. Those who don’t want to compromise their privacy just because they have to use the internet can pick the Dark Web when the deep web vs. the dark web is concerned. But that doesn’t mean it is not a risky space.

Attention! Before accessing the dark web, consider the potential threats that will automatically follow you. If not paid attention to, the threats of the dark web can be your worst nightmares. Some of the most common dangers of the dark web are:

  • Malware

They are everywhere on the dark web and are the most preferred means of cyber-attacks. Keyloggers, botnet malware, ransomware, and phishing malware are some of the most common malware that one will spot on the dark web.

  • Viruses

The dark web can inject viruses into your system and crash it entirely if you’re not vigilant enough.

  • Scams

The dark web is the favorite place for scammers. They can trick you with a lucrative deal and seal your crucial data and even money quickly.

  • Becoming a target of government agencies

We have already been told that the dark web is a hub of illegal activities.

Now, the government of all countries have become extra vigilant and have started monitoring dark web users. So, the chances are high that government agencies will monitor you rigorously by simply accessing the dark web.

Dark Web: How to Get Access to it Safely?

After knowing so much about the dark web, we are sure that the thought of how to get to the dark web would be roaming in your mind. Well, we have an answer for this as well.

First of all, understand that using the dark web is not an illegal activity or a crime. Misusing it is. You won’t be behind the bar for using the dark web. So, keep your mind on this front. So, keep your mind clear on this front. Now, let’s talk about accessing dark web safety. 

As quoted above, you need a specialized browser to access it. Tor stands for The Onion Routing and allows a user to access the internet, and acts like the most direct route that anyone can take to the dark web. It is free of charge and can be downloaded on most data-driven devices.

Tor takes the path of unregulated encrypted servers, commonly called “nodes”, to connect a computer to the deep web. It hides the IP location and doesn’t let anyone know a single detail about the user. But using Tor is not the only way to easily access the dark web, and it is not a foolproof way.

This is why it is suggested to use a VPN and Tor for complete secrecy and security.

If you’re wondering why adding a VPN with Tor is a good idea, then here are the reasons.

A reliable VPN with a wide range of servers will be able to keep your identity secret while using the Dark Web.

How Can a VPN Help You Protect Yourself on the Dark Web? 

Now that what is the dark web is clear to you, you must be thinking about how to use it securely. Well, consider a VPN.

VPN is the greatest gift to internet users as it protects user data and crucial information and lets the user browser anonymously and secretively. Its usage gives the ultimate peace of mind to users of all kinds of web users.

However, more than using a VPN, using the right one is crucial.

It is crucial that the VPN you’re using or planning to use has passed the DNS leak test, adheres to a strict zero-log policy, provides military-grade encryption, and has a wide range to the server hassle-free location switching.

After much research, we were able to spot one such VPN, and it is NordVPN. It has all these and multiple other security features and facilities. Its key trait is “Onion over VPN” servers that offer an extra bout of security. It is super user-friendly and is capable of preventing all kinds of DDoS- attacks.

nordvpn

Setting up NordVPN is as easy as clapping. Here are the steps to configuring it and how to get on the dark web:

  • Step 1 –Login to the official website of NordVPN and get the right subscription.
  • Step 2 – Download the NordVPN on your data-driven device and complete the account setting formalities. NordVPN is compatible with Windows, leading OS, and even routers. So you can download it on multiple platforms.
  • Step 3 – Once the set-up is complete, you can use the “Quick Connect” feature of NordVPN to connect to the server of your choice. The server list is mentioned on the home page. The country of the server will be mentioned as well. So, pick as per your preference and start using NordVPN.

Visit the NordVPN Website

Top 20 Websites on the Dark Web That Are Worth Taking Risks

Even though the dark web is a bed of thorns, few dark web websites are worth taking risks. These websites are hidden gems and can be a great help. If you’re keen to know about them, stay tuned.

For crisp information when you’re short in time, pay attention to this dark web com site(s) table:

Website

Website Type

Safe to Access

Link

DuckDuckGo

Search Engine

Yes, as it features additional security

https://3g2upl4pq6kufc4m.onion/

The Hidden Wiki

Link Directory

Not without a VPN, as it features malware and corrupted links

http://zqktlwi4fecvo6ri.onion/wiki/index.php/Main_Page

ProPublica

Online publication

Yes

https://p53lf57qovyuvwsc6xnrppyply3vtqm7l6pcobkmyqsiofyeznfu5uqd.onion/

Daniel

Link Directory

Yes

http://danschat356lctri3zavzh6fbxg2a7lo6z3etgkctzzpspewu7zdsaqd.onion/

Hidden Answers

 

Q/A and  views sharing

Not without VPN

http://answerszuvs3gg2l64e6hmnryudl5zgrmwm3vh65hzszdghblddvfiqd.onion/

Facebook Onion Site

Social media

Yes, provided you open safe links.

https://www.facebookcorewwwi.onion/

SearX

Meta search engine

Yes

http://ulrn6sryqaifefld.onion/

SecureDrop

Information Share

Yes

http://smb7p276iht3i2fj.onion/

BBC Tor Mirror

News And Information

Not without VPN

http://bbcnewsv2vjtpsuy.onion/

Tunnels

Onion site

Not without VPN

http://62gs2n5ydnyffzfy.onion/

Keybase

Onion site

Yes

http://fncuwbiisyh6ak3i.onion/

Imperial Library

Library website

Not without VPN

http://xfmro77i3lixucja.onion/

Wasabi Wallet

Cryptocurrency

Yes

http://wasabiukrxmkdgve5kynjztuovbg43uxcbcxn6y2okcrsg7gb6jdmbad.onion

ZeroBin

Message Tool

Yes

http://zerobinqmdqd236y.onion/

BlockChain.Info

Cryptocurrency

Yes

http://blockchainbdgpzk.onion/

Mailpile

Email Service

Not without VPN

http://clgs64523yi2bkhz.onion/

Archive.Today

Onion site

Not without VPN

http://archivecaslytosk.onion/

SecMail

Email service

Not without VPN

http://secmailw453j7piv.onion/

RiseUp

Email

Yes

http://nzh3fv6jc6jskki3.onion/

Tor Metrics

Tor metrics

Not without VPN

http://rougmnvswfsmd4dq.onion/

Let’s talk about these sites in detail now:

DuckDuckGo

Often considered the Google for dark web browsers, DuckDuckGo will not keep your cookies while providing useful information. You can access it on the surface web as well.  You can ask anything from this platform and get accurate answers without being logged in.

Perks

  • Has added a security layer
  • No data is stored

Dangers 

  • Limited accessibility

The Hidden Wiki

If the surface web has Wikipedia, the dark web browser has The Hidden Wiki. It’s a massive link directory featuring information on tons of topics. If you’re new to the dark web world, it’s suggested to use this directory to get the required .onion link for any dark web website or content. But, we are careful as it is famed for hosting pedophile sites.

Perks

  • Provide dark web information at a centralized place

Dangers 

  • A few links can be wrong or misleading

ProPublica

Interested to know the hidden information? Access ProPublica. Because of its informative content, it won a Pulitzer Award in 2016. Yes, it’s true. The online publication platform features stories on corruption, child labor, and political scams. It has exposed many politicians through dark web videos and other content formats.

Perks

  • It can be accessed on the surface web
  • Feature an onion site

Dangers

  • Date leak

Daniel

Daniel is a great way to learn everything about ‘how to access dark web websites’ as it features more than 7000 dark web links. With this information, surfing dark web browsers becomes easy.

Perks

  • Inform whether or not the particular dark web website is online

Dangers 

  • Some links can feature malware.

Hidden Answers

The dark web also has Quora and Reddit, and it’s known as Hidden  Answers. Here, you’re allowed to share your thoughts in mind without getting tracked or blocked. The community will guide you on almost every topic.

Perks

  • Anonymity

Danger  

  • Unfiltered content can be too problematic.

Facebook Onion Site

If you don’t want to share your data while using Facebook, then try Facebook Onion Site. Here, you’ll be able to enjoy better online privacy.

Perks

  • Provide access to restricted content.

Dangers 

  • Threat actors are present in huge numbers.

SearX

A huge meta-search engine for dark web browsers, SearX is available on both the surface and dark web. One of the best dark websites, it doesn’t store the end-users’ IP address and search history. Hence, privacy is protected. It’s a great choice to make if you’re looking for a dark intellectual web.

Perks

  • Auto blocking of cookies
  • No user-profiling results

Danger 

  • Some of the images may contain malware

SecureDrop

For sharing sensational information while keeping identity hidden, whistleblowers use SecureDrop.

Perks

  • Keeps the user identity hidden

Dangers 

  • Sharing is limited

BBC TOR Mirror

If the BBC is banned in your area and you still need to access it, try BBC Tor Mirror with the help of a dark web browser. It keeps the users’ identities a secret and lets them access content without any hassles.

Perks

  • Uncensored Content

Dangers 

  • If government vigilance is strong, you can have a tough time accessing it

Tunnels

Unlike other dark web websites, Tunnels features links displaying information related to individuals who have broken into the American university system.

Perks

  • Help you post censored content

Dangers 

  • Accessing tunnels is illegal

Keybase

If you want to bring all your online identities together using cryptography, then the Keybase dark web website will help you out. By simply uploading the PGP key, you can connect your active Facebook, Twitter, Github, and Bitcoin business accounts.

Perks

  • Allows end-users to make online presence safe

Dangers 

  • If hacked, you will lose all your digital presence in one go

Imperial Library

For lovers of the intellectual dark web, the Imperial Library is the best bet to make. Here, one will access a wide range of websites.

Perks

  • Easy access to more than 500,000 books

Dangers 

  • It can make you do with the offense of copyright infringement

Wasabi Wallet

With Wasabi Wallet, you can easily use cryptocurrency on the dark web as this is the most famed cryptocurrency wallet.  With features like CoinJoin, end-users can use different coins in a single payment.

Perks

  • It uses the Neutrino protocol

Dangers 

  • I cannot think of it. Mostly, it’s safe.

ZeroBin

Use ZeroBin to share dark web content seamlessly. It’s a reliable communication tool when you use it with Tor browser dark web.

Perk

  • Data shared in encrypted

Danger 

  • It may not work in certain countries

BlockChain.Info

With BlockChain.Info, one can buy or sell cryptocurrencies of all sorts with enough safety.

Perks

  • Features HTTP security certificate

Dangers

  • Some data theft incidents have happened

Mailpile

With this dark web website, one can make email encrypted.

Perks

  • The code is open-source

Dangers 

  • You can download user information

Archive.Today

Launched in 2012, it preserves the dark web heritage. It will help you learn what is the dark web, and how to get to the dark web with verified content.

Perks

  • Information remains alive even if the original page is deleted.

Dangers 

  • Might house malware

SecMail

SecMail is one of the most famed email services for the dark web.

Perks

  • Handles PGP-encrypted messages

Dangers 

  • Limited data usages

RiseUp

It’s a type of communication website giving multiple emailing and chat options.

Perks

  • No record of communication is stored.

Dangers 

  • An invitation code has to be shared for an account.

Tor Metrics

Want to learn more about Tor dark web, then use Tor Metrics.

Perks

  • Data will be safe.

Dangers 

  • Only non-sensitive data is stored.
 Related article for users outside USA: 

IT: https://it.vpnwelt.com/cosa-sono-dark-web-e-deep-web-e-come-entrarci/

FR: https://fr.vpnwelt.com/comment-acceder-au-dark-web/

Ending Notes

The Dark Web is just like a blank canvas. Like you can write anything, good or bad, on black canvas, and you can use Dark Web as you please. However, always use a VPN in the process. A VPN support will help you have the confidence to ditch the dangers of the Dark Web and use it without any qualms or cyber threats.

❗️❗️❗️

Let VPNWelt warn you: to be completely secure on the internet, you will need the help of the best VPN service.

You probably don’t have time to learn all the details about VPN services but you want to know which one is the best for you. Here are six trustworthy VPNs I can recommend to you, depending on the scope of use of each of them.

  •     Best VPN overall: NordVPN
  •     Best value for money: CyberGhost
  •     Cheapest annual subscription: PIA
  •     Best for streaming: Surfshark
  •     Best premium VPN: ExpressVPN
  •     Largest country selection: VeePN

For more information, see our picks for the best VPNs here.

Related articles:

FAQs

Is it legal to enter the Dark Web?

Yes, you can use the Dark Web without any fear. Entering into it is not a crime. Using it wrongly is. So, make sure you do not use your access to the Dark Web for any illegal activity.

Is it safe to enter the Dark Web? Which browser can I use to visit the dark web?
What kind of sites can I find on the dark web?
If the Dark Web is so secret, how does anybody find anything?
What is Tor?

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