Broadly internet is classified into three layers, namely, the surface web, the deep web, and the dark web. Each of these layers represents a different level of accessibility and anonymity. From a cybersecurity perspective, it is important to know what you can do safely on the web by understanding these terms and knowing what they include.
It is estimated that the surface web comprises less than 4% of the entire internet. The surface web, often known as the visible web, is the section of internet that is accessible via search engines like Google and Bing. This covers all web pages that are indexed by search engines and content that is accessible to everyone. An example of surface web would be the common web pages that we see and browse every day (without signup), like Wikipedia.
The deep web is a part of the internet that is inaccessible to normal search engines. Deep web information is not indexed by search engines such as Google as they are restricted from reaching the content using various protocols. Individuals are also restricted from browsing the information unless they have a login (or special access) and/or know the precise path (URL). It is estimated that the deep web comprises approximately 90% of the whole internet.
Some examples of the deep web are:
- Login-required social media/messaging services
- Encrypted or password-protected online banking/financial information.
- Medical records and other sensitive personal data held in systems accessible only to authorized people
- Non-public court records and legal documents
- Private forums and discussion boards that require registration and identification
- Subscription-based streaming services like Netflix
- Non-public government databases and archives.
The dark web is a section of the deep web that is deliberately hidden and requires specific software and protocols to access. The dark web is frequently associated with illegal activity. Browsing the dark web can be dangerous and illegal. It can expose you to malicious code/malware and viruses that can affect your computer and other devices. People should be careful and use the best cybersecurity practices to protect themselves.
It's important to know the differences between these three layers of the internet because they have different levels of risks and opportunity. The surface web is usually safe and open to everyone. The deep web and dark web, on the other hand, can be more dangerous and require more safety precautions.
How To Safely Browse Internet
- Always use a reliable antivirus solution to protect your devices from viruses, malware, and other threats. It is also important to regularly update the antivirus software for protection from the latest threats which were not identified in earlier versions.
- Use strong and complex passwords that are difficult to guess.
- Keep your software and operating system up to date to have the most recent security fixes and features.
- Be cautious of unsolicited emails and social media posts. Never give your personal information or click on a link from unknown senders.
- Using a VPN service to browse internet can protect your online activity and encrypt your interactions.
- Avoid accessing sensitive information or making financial transactions on public Wi-Fi networks.
- Practice safe browsing by visiting sites that use SSL certificates.
Centex Technologies provides enterprise cybersecurity solutions. For more information on cybersecurity solutions for your business, contact Centex Technologies at Killeen (254) 213 - 4740, Dallas (972) 375 - 9654, Atlanta (404) 994 - 5074, and Austin (512) 956 – 5454.