An Examination of the Dark Web

By Jessica Bullet •  Updated: 01/15/23 •  3 min read

The dark web is a part of the internet that is not indexed by search engines and can only be accessed using specialized software, such as the Tor browser. It is often associated with illegal activities, such as drug trafficking, money laundering, and the sale of stolen personal information.

One of the most well-known illegal markets on the dark web is the Silk Road, which the FBI shut down in 2013. The Silk Road was an online black market that allowed users to buy and sell illegal drugs anonymously. The site’s creator, Ross Ulbricht, was arrested and charged with multiple crimes, including drug trafficking, money laundering, and hacking.

Another illegal activity on the dark web is the sale of stolen personal information, such as credit card numbers, Social Security numbers, and login credentials for online accounts. Hackers can use this information for identity theft and financial fraud.

The dark web is also a haven for hackers and cybercriminals who use it to buy and sell malware, exploit kits, and other tools used to carry out cyberattacks. This can include ransomware, a type of malware that encrypts a victim’s files and demands payment in exchange for the decryption key.

Terrorism and extremism are other activities that take place on the dark web. Groups and individuals involved in these activities use the dark web’s anonymity to communicate, raise funds, and share propaganda.

Law enforcement agencies have made some headway in cracking down on illegal activities on the dark web. In 2017, the FBI and Europol shut down the AlphaBay and Hansa markets, two of the largest dark web marketplaces for illegal goods and services.

However, it is essential to note that not all activity on the dark web is illegal. The dark web also provides a platform for whistleblowers, activists, and journalists to communicate and share information anonymously, which is important for protecting free speech and human rights.

In conclusion, the dark web is a part of the internet associated with illegal activities, such as drug trafficking, money laundering, and the sale of stolen personal information. It also serves as a haven for hackers and cybercriminals and a platform for terrorist and extremist activities. While Law enforcement agencies have made some headway in cracking down on illegal activities on the dark web, it is essential to note that not all activity on the dark web is illegal, and some activities on the dark web also serve as an essential platform for protecting free speech and human rights.