The virtual world of the World Wide Web is a vast space that, like the real world, contains both good and bad.  While Google, Facebook, Amazon and all other online services have brought so many enhancements and innovation to our lives, there is also a place called “the Dark Web.”

The Dark Web is a name “…that refers specifically to a collection of websites that exist on an encrypted network and cannot be found by using traditional search engines or visited by using traditional browsers,” according to TechAdvisor.

Users must use such services as the Tor encryption tool to gain entry to the Dark Web where many illegal operations reside. In the Dark Web, one can find “…shady and illegal activities, such as child pornography and the sale of drugs, firearms, and stolen credit card number,” according to The Daily Dot.

While the dangers of the Dark Web are prevalent, the fact is that the Dark Web is relatively small compared to the World Wide Web. Wired writes, “The World Wide Web has swelled to over a billion different sites, while current estimations put the number of Tor hidden sites at between 7000 and 30,000….”

That said, don’t let the “size” of the Dark Web fool you.  TechAdvisor reports that while sites on the Dark Web can be visited by anyone, “…it is very difficult to work out who is behind the sites. And it can be dangerous if you slip up and your identity is discovered.”

Why Should Businesses Care about this small, dangerous virtual underworld?

The fact is that many companies unwittingly have a presence on the Dark Web.  Recently, OWL Cybersecurity released a report showing that nearly every Fortune 500 company is exposed on the Dark Web and may have compromised credentials on certain dark websites, according to Business2Business.

For instance, Business2Business reported that Amazon had credentials that “…were leaked to the darknet, allowing fraudsters to log in to the accounts of third-party sellers… change associated bank information to divert funds into their own accounts, and then sell fake items at deeply discounted prices.”

In addition, many hackers and cybercriminals can buy and trade viruses and ransomware on the Dark Web, such as the recent Wanna Cry virus which affected nearly 200,000 victims in 150 countries worldwide in the Spring of 2017.

What Should Organizations Do to Protect Themselves:

It’s critical for businesses to have the right protections in place, including anti-virus software and next-generation firewalls to keep their company and user information off of the Dark Web.  In addition, in previous blog posts, we have iterated the steps for creating an effective disaster recovery plan that includes educating employees on security protocols as well as how to spot malicious emails and other signs of rogue online activity.

Another form of protection is to sign up for “Dark Web Scanning Services.”

DiamondIT now offers DarkWeb ID from ID Agent — the industry’s first commercial solution to detect an organization’s compromised credentials in real-time on the Dark Web.  Using a proprietary technology, DarkWeb ID vigilantly searches the most secretive corners of the Internet to find compromised credentials associated with your company, contractors, and other personnel and notifies you immediately when these critical assets are compromised before they are used for identity theft, data breaches or other crimes.

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DiamondIT’s DarkWeb ID can help your organization detect your compromised credentials in real-time on the Dark Web including the following: Hidden chat rooms • Private websites • Peer-to-peer networks • IRC (internet relay chat) channels • Social media platforms • Black market sites • 640,000+ botnets and more.  Call 877-713-8364 or go to www.diamondit.pro for more information.