What is the Dark Web?
The Dark Web is a separate, hidden section of the internet that differs from the “surface web.” To access this part of the internet, you will need to use a special web browser called Tor. This browser is unique as it gives the user access to .onion links. These are special links hidden from the “normal” internet and intended to be hosted anonymously, through special routing software that bounces the user’s location from one area of the world to another. As you would imagine, criminals have exploited this concept for illicit endeavours. Therefore, this makes it easier to get ahold of narcotics, weapons, stolen data and other black market goods using anonymous cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Monero.
Dark Web Threats
Recently, the Dark web has come into the news due to the number of cyber criminals that have surfaced on the dark web in the last three years. These usually include ransomware groups such as Lockbit 3.0, Vice Society and cl0p. As such, this is how these groups manage to stay anonymous and uncensored by governments and police forces. These groups are known for attacking Western organisations in ‘RaaS’ (Ransomware as a Service) attacks. As a result, this is when a threat actor will encrypt the organisation’s network and force the company to pay some type of ransom to decrypt its data. In the past five years, these attacks have exploded in popularity due to their aggressive design. Thus, the victims of these attacks feel as if they are held, hostage. These previously mentioned groups will often threaten to release all the stolen documentation onto their dark website if the payment has failed to be paid. There are multiple ways to prevent these types of attacks from occurring.
How to Prevent These Threats?
One of the most popular services that have come to light in recent years would be the practice of Dark web monitoring tools/services. These services will scan underground Darkweb sites for a client name or a submitted keyword. Moreover, this can drastically help companies get a clear image of what is happening on the Dark web without even needing to install the Tor browser. If the worst was to happen, and you were affected by a ransomware attack, it is strongly recommended to utilise a previous network backup for the time being. Furthermore, it is recommended that you enlist the help of an incident response team.
This will help you discover what caused the attack in the first place and help you to secure your system. Hence, minimising the chances of the user being attacked again. In addition, you would also have to contact the relevant authorities and customers to inform them of the breach and the potential theft of their data. As previously mentioned, it is vital to have regular network backups in case something goes wrong. As noted, this would mean that if something went south, you would have an up-to-date restored version to work off whilst an incident response team discovered the root issue. It is highly important, for the user to utilise the most up-to-date security practices. As such, this includes implementing regular security updates, the use of two-factor authentication and employee awareness training.
The Dark web can be a scary place as it hosts criminal activities and illegal goods. However, with the right security measures in place and knowledge of the threats posed by the dark web, you can protect yourself and your organisation from any malicious actors lurking on this hidden side of the internet. Most importantly, it is essential to remain vigilant and be aware of any threats that could affect your organisation. Here at DarkInvader, we are actively scanning the Dark Web to look for any mention of your Url or domain thats been exploited.