Deep Web vs Dark Web – What is the Difference?

Deep Web vs Dark Web – What is the Difference?

Deep Web vs Dark Web – What is the Difference: When you think of the Deep Web or Dark Web, what comes to mind? Illegal Activity or Child Pornography…  Drug or Terrorism… Phishing and Scams…Hacking or Murder… Bitcoins… Isn’t it?

Well, you might be kind of right… and kind of wrong. But before going deeper into this topic let’s have a look at ‘What is the Web Actually?’

  • The World Wide Web—commonly referred to as WWW, W3, or the Web—is an interconnected system of public WebPages accessible through the Internet.
  • Many people assume that the Web is the same as the Internet. And also use these terms interchangeably. But the Web is not the same as the Internet: the Web is one of many applications built on top of the Internet.
  • Tim Berners-Lee proposed the architecture of the web and invented the World Wide Web in 1989. And he created the first web server, web browser, and webpage on his computer at the CERN physics research lab in 1990.
  • Web 1.0 was the first implementation of the Web and lasted roughly from 1989 to 2005. Although, Web 2.0 is the current version of the internet (a term often used interchangeably with the web) with which we are all familiar.
  • Web 3.0 or Web3 is the third generation of the World Wide Web. But, currently a work in progress, it is a vision of a decentralized and open Web with greater utility for its users.

Well, now you already become to know what the web is. Now, let’s discuss the three layers of the web in detail one by one. : Surface Web, Deep Web, and the Dark Web.

What is the Surface Web?

The Surface Web is what users access in their regular day-to-day activity. It is the top layer of the web and includes such kind of information that is easily accessible by a normal internet user through any kind of browser or search engine.

This is where we all spend most of our time. And it is the safest layer among the other three layers. The Surface Web covers only 5 % (approx) of the World Wide Web. It is also called the Visible Web, Indexed Web, Indexable Web, or Lightnet.

Deep Web vs Dark Web – What is the Difference: Web Iceberg
Web Iceberg
:: Image source:- Wikimedia Commons , License ::

This is available to the general public using standard search engines and can be accessed using standard web browsers that do not require any special configuration, such as Google Chrome, Microsoft’s Internet Explorer or Edge, and Mozilla Firefox, etc.

In addition, the Surface Web contains about 25-50 petabytes of data (HTML-included basis). According to one source, as of June 14, 2015, Google’s Index of the Surface Web contains about 14.8 billion pages. And, It’s Unbelievable!

What is the Deep Web?

The Deep Web, invisible web, or hidden webs are parts of the World Wide Web whose contents are not indexed by standard web search engines. It is the largest expanding category of new information on the Internet. The total quantity of the deep web is 1000-2000X greater than the quantity of the Surface Web. And, the deep web rests below the surface and accounts for approximately 90% of all websites.

  • The deep web includes pages that were not indexed, fee-for-service (FFS) sites, private databases, and the dark web. Also, the content of the deep web is hidden behind HTTP forms.
  • The content of the deep web can be located and accessed by a direct URL or IP address but may require a password or other security access to get past public-website pages.
  • The deep web gives users access to far more information than would otherwise be available on the Internet, and it also increases privacy.
  • Accessing the content on the Deep Web is relatively safe, the same as using a regular browser. But you can be in danger when you try to buy some illegal things or try to download cracked files or software or do any kind of unethical activity, so be careful.

It refers to parts of the Internet not fully accessible through standard search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing. Data on this web cannot be accessed by normal search engines, such as government private data, bank data, cloud data, etc. These data are sensitive and private, so kept out of reach.

Read more…

The content of the deep web is hidden behind HTTP forms and includes uses such as online banking, webmail, any sensational government documents, research papers, medical reports,  private or otherwise restricted access to social media pages, and profiles, etc.

What is the Dark Web?

The Dark Web is a decentralized network of Internet sites that routs all their communications across multiple servers and encrypts them at every step, trying to keep users as anonymous as possible. Also, It is the part or division of the Deep Web, which is intentionally hidden from normal search engines. All its data is encrypted. It is also called the Dark Net.

This is a small part of the deep web. It contains about 5% of the total internet. But, some estimates mark the extent of the dark web as being much smaller than that of the surface web. However, it is challenging to measure how widespread the dark web is due to its decentralized and obscure nature.

  • The dark web is a hidden set of internet sites and is only accessible by a specialized web browser. Also, the Dark Web refers to encrypted online content that is not used in our daily lives by conventional search engines.
  • It is used to keep Internet activity anonymous and private, which can be helpful in both legal and illegal applications.
  • While some internet users use it to avoid government censorship, it is also known to be used for highly illegal activities.
  • In addition, Very few regular users will ever interact with the dark web. While the deep web usually requires just a username and password to be accessed, also the dark web cannot be reached without the right software or hardware.
Web Server
Web Server
:: Image source:- Wikimedia Commons , License ::

In addition…

The dark web or dark net was officially launched 20 years ago, on 20 March 2000 with the release of ‘Freenet’. And, it is a P2P (Peer to Peer) and decentralized network, designed to make it less vulnerable to attack and snooping by authorities and states.

It is not illegal to access the dark web. In fact, some uses are perfectly legal and support the “Dark Web” standard. Here an internet user gets some benefits from its use: User anonymity, virtually untraceable services, and sites. However, most of the sites on the Dark Web are involved in illegal activities.

Difference between Deep Web and Dark Web

Deep WebDark Web
The Deep Web rests below the surface and accounts for approximately 90% of all websites.Dark Web is a small part of the deep web. And it is only 0.01% of the deep web and 5% of the total internet.  
The deep web is part of the WWW whose contents banking are not indexed by standard web search engines.The dark web is the WWW content that exists on darknets, overlay networks that use the Internet but require specific software, configurations, or authorization to access.   
Also, Its access is not browser-specific.  Its access is browser-specific like Tor, I2P, Freenet, etc.  
To access this, you require a password, encryption, or specialty software.  To access this, you require Tor Project or a similar browser.  
In addition, Deep Web is often used by institutions, private companies, Government agencies, hospitals, research centers, and so on. Also free services like Gmail, and subscription-based services like Netflix and Amazon.  Used mostly for criminal activity, illegal weapon or drug sealing, whistleblowing, and expressions of dissent. But, the most commonly hosted type of content on the Dark Web was Child Pornography, followed by black markets.   
  Deep Web Search engines: Ahmia, DuckDuckGo, USA.gov, The Wayback Machine, The WWW Virtual Library.    Dark Web Search engines: Torch, Deep Search, Hoodle, Visitor, Tor 66, etc.       
Deep Web vs Dark Web

FAQ: About Deep Web and Dark Web

1. Is Deep Web The Same As Dark Web?

No, the deep web and the dark web are completely different in many ways. And, The deep web is usually used for legit purposes that require anonymity, but the dark web is often used for illegal activities.

2. Is It Illegal To Be On Deep Web?

No, it is not illegal to access either the deep web or the dark web. In fact, some uses are perfectly legal and support the web standard.

Browsing the dark web is not illegal but most of the sites on the Dark Web are involved in illegal activities. That’s why I do not advise you to visit the Dark Web especially.

3. Is Dark Web Bigger Than Deep Web?

No, the dark web is a small subset of the deep web. and, it is a part of the internet that is not found using search engines. It is only 0.01% of the deep web and 5% of the total internet.

And, the Deep Web rests below the surface and accounts for approximately 90% of all websites.

4. Can You Be Tracked On The Dark Web?

An individual’s internet activity can be tracked and monitored using their IP address. But, actually, the ‘Dark Web’ uses complex systems that anonymize a user’s true IP address, making it very difficult to work out which websites a device has visited.

So, the identities and locations of dark net users stay anonymous, and cannot be tracked easily due to the layered encryption system.

5. What Happens If You Go On The Dark Web?

The dark web is not completely illegal, but the illegal and criminal activity that takes place there gives it a negative vibe. However, you should not visit this web if you don’t know what you are going to do or how to operate this web properly.

But if you ever want to visit the dark web, first you should cover your webcam lens. Because you are about to enter the dark world and you never know what might happen.

6. Who Uses Dark Web?

The Dark Web may be used by people wishing to carry out illegal activities online. Such as UNETHICAL HACKING or Data Phishing, etc. The dark web is mostly used for selling illegal goods such as drugs, weapons, human organs, stolen personal data, etc. And, these kinds of operations, and the websites offering them, are often referred to as Hidden Services.

In addition, the dark web is not only meant for cyber-criminals. But also cyber security experts can use this to improve business security.

7. Which Country Has Most Dark Web Users?

The dark web has 2.5 million daily active users accessing underground sites with the Tor Network, also known as The Onion Router. In addition, Dark Web activity has increased by 300% in the last 3 years and over 30% of North Americans access the dark web regularly.

United States – 34.81%, Russia – 11.46%, Germany – 7.16%, The Netherlands – 6.92%, France – 3.29%

8. Can Police Track You On The Dark Web?

Yes, the police can still track you on the dark web if they need to, although it’s extremely hard to do so. The Tor browser you use to access the dark web can mask your identity and location. So, the identities and locations of dark net users stay anonymous. And cannot be tracked easily due to the layered encryption system.

9. Can The Dark Web Be Shut Down?

These markets have no protection for their users and can be closed down at any time by authorities.

10. How Much Money Goes Through The Dark Web?

A recent report by a leading crypto-payment analytic firm, Chainalysis, shows that Bitcoin (The largest cryptocurrency) transactions on the dark web grew from approximately $250 million in 2012 to $872 million in 2018. And if this continues like this, the market will cross two billion transactions very soon.

11. Which VPN Is Best For The Dark Web?

ExpressVPN is the best VPN if you want to access the dark web. It gives you an additional layer of encryption and anonymity—backed by a strict no-log policy.

Hopefully, this article will provide enough information on ‘Deep Web vs Dark Web – What is the Difference?’. Which helps you to know the difference between these two webs.

If you have any queries, please let me know in the comment box, and we will try to answer your question as soon as possible. THANK YOU & DON’T FORGET TO SHARE WITH YOUR FRIENDS Who Need This Informative Article.   

Stay Safe! Stay Secure!

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