Posted on December 15, 2019,

It’s no secret that the dark web is a dangerous place. While many organizations have beefed up their security programs in response to growing cyber threats, most are still behind the curve.

 

Is it worth your time to actively monitor the dark web and ensure your data stays out of the hands of cybercriminals? Absolutely. But if you’re unfamiliar with the dark web and how it works, you may not know where to begin. 

 

In this blog, we’ll discuss the most pressing dark web risks and share the best ways to combat them effectively. 

What Is the Dark Web?

 

Some people believe that the dark web is nothing more than certain parts of the internet, but that would be misleading. The truth is that many use the terms “dark web” and “deep web” interchangeably, but this is inaccurate. 

 

The “visible” internet that most people know today only makes up about 10% of all websites. But below the surface layer, there are two more sectors – the deep web and the dark web.

 

The deep web, which sits below the surface of the internet, accounts for approximately 90% of all websites. There are all sorts of examples of deep web content that aren’t malicious, such as content behind paywalls or forums that require registration. 

 

The dark web is specifically hidden for increased privacy. Thanks to new technology like encryption and anonymous browser software, nearly anyone can access the dark web if they’re interested – making it a breeding ground for illegal activity. Cybercriminals take advantage of the increased privacy to engage in illegal drug trade, fraud and much more. 

 

If your organization holds a significant amount of valuable intellectual property or handles personal data, it is vulnerable to criminal dark web risks. 

What Gets Sold On the Dark Web?

 

Many illegal products and services are sold on the dark web. For example, cybercriminals offer “DDoS-for-hire” services to the highest bidder, allowing an individual or company to drive a company offline for their own personal or professional reasons.

 

Here are some items that are commonly sold on the dark web:

 

  • Drugs

  • Weapons

  • Counterfeit money

  • Credit card information

  • Hacking services

  • Forged documents

 

The anonymity of the dark web poses unique geographical and technical challenges for law enforcement. 

 

It’s easy to understand why companies are investing in cybersecurity. Some of the most powerful companies in the world have been hacked, including Sony Pictures in 2014 and Equifax in 2017. In fact, a dark web destination recently exposed 1.3 million stolen credit cards, in what analysts are claiming is the largest credit card cache uploaded to the dark web in history. 

How To Combat Dark Web Security Threats

 

Organizations in every industry need to take precautions when it comes to dark web security. After all, this isn’t just about personal data – losing intellectual property can easily put an organization out of business. 

 

What steps can you take to make sure your data is protected? 

 

One way to combat dark web risks is to implement a strong password policy. Choosing a well-known password manager like True Key, Keeper or LastPass helps you create a unique and encrypted password for each site that you need access to, which can help protect your company’s information against dark web security threats. 

 

When you consider that 81% of data breaches occur because of a weak or stolen password, it’s obvious why a password manager might be a smart investment.

 

Of course, this isn’t the only way to make sure your organization is safe from cybercriminals. Here are some other options to consider:

 

  • Extend protection to employees’ personal accounts

  • Use two-factor authentication

  • Limit employee access to sensitive information

  • Prohibit members of your organization from using a Tor browser

 

Minimize Dark Web Threats With SugarShot

 

At the end of the day, no organization wants its data on the dark web. That’s one of the reasons why you should consider SugarShot as your trusted technology partner. We understand that protecting your data is crucial to a profitable future. We take a proactive approach with our clients to bring attention to any dark web security threats that may directly impact your operations.

 

A data breach can prove fatal for an organization’s reputation and productivity, and we take dark web threats extremely seriously. Protecting yourself against the dark web doesn’t have to be ridiculously expensive or complicated. We empower Los Angeles businesses so that they can focus on the future, rather than worry about any potential risks and threats that might present themselves.

 

Contact us today to find out more about how we can help keep your information safe and your reputation intact.