What is the Darknet?

Greg Edwards

The Darknet is the part of the Internet used for anonymous communications.  It is used for both good and evil.  The Deep Web and Darknet are often confused, especially by the media.  The Deep Web refers to anything that is not Google searchable.  Estimates say that 96% of the data on the Internet is in the Deep Web.

DarkNet Iceberg

What is Darknet used for?

The Good:

  • Political dissidents that want to hide their identity, so they are not persecuted
  • Whistleblowing
  • News Leaks
  • File Sharing - Confidential Files
  • Intelligence and Military - Private Communication

The Bad:

  • Black Markets - Drugs, Cyber-Arms, Stolen Information, Weapons, pretty much anything illegal
  • File Sharing – Counterfeit Software, Unlicensed Media, Pornography
  • Cybercriminals – Organize, communicate and share information anonymously

Darknet vs. Deep Web

You probably use the Deep Web every single day.  The Deep Web is any data that is not indexed by search engines. 

  • Banking information
  • Netflix movies
  • Medical history
  • Anything you need a password to access

Darknet is part of the Deep Web, but a very small portion.  The Deep Web consists of 96% of the data on the Internet, but Darknet is estimated to be less than 3% of the Deep Web.  A news story stating 96% of the Internet is hidden sounds much more ominous than Darknet being 3%.

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