Accessing the deep web is easier than you might think. In fact, you probably already have. The media hasn’t done a great job of differentiating what’s considered the deep web and what is the dark web — two similar names for two very different things.
What is the deep web?
below the surface and not completely dark. Search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo are able to search and index websites because of links. They use links to rank search results according to things like relevancy, inbound links, and keywords. Regular browsers search the so-called “surface web,” but that’s where the search stops.
For instance, if you wanted to search a public library catalog to find a book, you couldn’t type the title into your browser’s search bar and expect Google to return a meaningful result for your library. That level of information would be located in the deep web.
The reason search engines can’t return this data to you is because there are no links. (Search engines crawl the internet by visiting one web page, then the links on that page, and then the links on subsequent pages.)
Instead, you would have to go to the public library’s website and use a search bar inside the website to locate this data on the library’s servers.
This kind of information is all over the internet. Almost every time you search internally on a website, you’re accessing deep web content.
What’s on the deep web?
The deep web holds the content that’s invisible to search engines. Here are a few examples of what’s on the deep web:
The content of your personal email accounts
The content of your social media accounts
The content of your online banking accounts
Data that companies store on their private databases
Content contained within scientific and academic databases
A lot of what exists on the deep web consists of information that you probably wouldn’t want to turn up in a web search — like your checking account information — because it’s private and could be misused.
Accessing the dark web with Tor browser
Getting to the dark web is actually a lot easier than you might think. All you have to do is download a dark web browser, like the Tor browser.
Once you install a dark web browser on your device, it functions just like a regular browser: type in a URL, and off you go.
However, finding the material you’re looking for on the dark web is more difficult than using a search engine like Google. The dark web doesn’t have an index or ranking system to help you find what you need.
There are such things as dark web search engines. One called the Uncensored Hidden Wiki offers some guidance to content on the dark web, but it may include illegal websites.