Are Dark Web Scans Effective?

The Dark Web is Anonymous

The dark web is a scary place.  It is a network of websites teeming with illegal activity.  It is a secret place where visitors protect their identity by using techniques to keep identifying information (Like their IP address) hidden.

There are several methods that people use to keep themselves anonymous when accessing the dark web.  You need to use the TOR browser to access the dark web.

What can be Found on the Dark Web?

As far as illegal stuff – you name it, and it can be found on the dark web.  Related to identity theft, you can find tax forms, credit card numbers, login credentials for bank accounts, stolen debit card numbers, and more.

You can also hire hackers to use their botnets to conduct denial of service attacks on the victims of your choice.

You can buy drugs and weapons.  You can order guns and other devices that can be used for crimes.  You can even purchase counterfeit money in bulk.

Why it is best to stay away

If you want to enter into the seedy world of the dark web out of curiosity, I recommend that you resist the temptation.  You will find nothing but trouble.

If you think that the TOR browser will keep you anonymous, then you are making an assumption that you may not want to make.  Law enforcement, the government, and others have a great interest in the Dark Web and are looking out for the bad guys.

So don’t have too much confidence that you are invisible and anonymous.

There are VPN apps and other ways that people to further enhance their privacy when accessing the dark web.  But remember that the good guys are out there and doing everything they can to clamp down on illegal activity.  So, as I said, it is best to stay away.

The Dark Web Scan

Many different companies are starting to market their dark web scan services.  These services allow you to scan the dark web for your private information – you can scan for things like your email address, social security numbers, and other personal information.

Some of these services, like Experian, allow you to scan for basic information at no cost.  But they encourage you to sign up for a paid scanning service that will dig deeper and be of more value than a cursory scan.

There is debate as to whether this type of scan is useful.

These scans access the dark web and analyze information from message boards, documents, etc.  If your private information is found then you want to take action by freezing your credit, reporting your credit cards as stolen, and taking other measures to mitigate the damage.

But there is a high likely hood that these dark web scans do not detect effectively.  If your data is for sale, it is highly unlikely that the information can be scanned on the dark web.  Your data would not be released and available on the dark web, but it would be sold to a private buyer.  The value of your private information would be diminished if it was posted on the dark web for anyone (Including the scanner) to see.

By nature, the dark web is not searchable.  The companies that sell dark web scan services do not outline their scanning methods.  But logically, it is questionable that these services are effective.