October 5, 2015
You may have seen the term ‘Dark Web’ when reading about recent hacks to Ashley Madison’s website or to Sony’s servers. The Dark Web is a part of the Internet not indexed by search engines such as Google. You can’t get to a Dark Website by typing its URL into Chrome or other browser–you need software that uses encryption to create anonymity.
Although obtaining encryption software is legal, to actually use the Dark Web you have to know what site you’re looking for by typing in specific sites and passwords. The Dark Web has legitimate uses: for example, it can help citizens communicate who live under dictatorships where the Internet is restricted, or by journalists who are engaging with anonymous sources. However, the Dark Web is also heavily used by criminals. It’s where hackers post data they’re looking to sell, like stolen credit card numbers or social security numbers. Here’s how to keep your personal data off of the Dark Web:
- Use strong passwords, and change passwords frequently
- Use anti-virus programs like Microsoft Security Essentials or Avast for Macs
- Keep your computer updated when patches are released
For further tips on protecting your devices from hackers, visit https://security.ufl.edu/.