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FAQ: Dark Web

The dark web is a hidden layer of the internet that requires specific software to access and is not accessible by search engines. The dark web is popular with cybercriminals because they can remain anonymous and untraceable. Cybercriminals that hack into accounts and steal personal information often wait months or even years to use it. They can meet other cybercriminals anonymously on hidden dark web sites or private forums to sell personal information that can be used to commit identity theft or other crimes.

How does the dark web differ from the deep and surface web?

The surface web comprises of websites that are indexed (or catalogued) by search engines.
The dark web is a hidden layer of the internet that is not accessible or indexed by search engines, and requires specific software for access. This area is popular with criminals because they can remain anonymous and untraceable as they communicate. The dark web is a huge marketplace where hackers and thieves exchange information, goods and services; information exposed from data breaches, hacking incidents, or leaked information can be bought and sold on the dark web as "lists" by identity thieves. Information traded on the dark web may be old or could even re-appear several months, or years following exposure of your personal information. The dark web forms a small part of the deep web.

How does one access the dark web?

The dark web is accessible only if you download a special open-source browser software. Such software typically uses encryption technology to help users maintain their anonymity online. It does this, in part, by routing connections through servers around the world, making them much harder to track.

I have never been on the dark web. How did my information get on the dark web?

You do not need to be on the dark web for your information to end up there. Information stolen or exposed in data breaches or hacking incidents, or leaked information can be bought and sold on the dark web as "lists" by identity thieves. This information may be old or could even re-appear several months, or years following exposure of the information.

What does it mean to have my information exposed on the dark web? Have my accounts have been hacked?

"Exposed" information does not necessarily mean that your account(s) have been hacked. You can be proactive and take several actions to help protect yourself. Change your password for the site/service mentioned in the notification. In addition, if you use the same password for numerous online accounts, make sure you change these passwords as well. Enable two-factor authentication whenever offered by a site or service. Visit our Dark Web Monitoring Support Article for a full list of helpful tips and guidance.

Can my personal information be exposed if I have unsubscribed from a website or deactivated my account?

Even though you may have unsubscribed from a website or may have deactivated your account, your data may still be present in their data systems and could be exposed during a data breach, a hacking incident, or another type of data leak.

§For NortonLifeLock offerings provided to you by a Service Provider or through channels outside the United States, the LifeLock identity theft protection services and coverage, plan feature names and functionality might differ from the services offered directly by NortonLifeLock. Please contact your Service Provider for details on their NortonLifeLock plan offerings.

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DOCID: v133629658
نظام التشغيل: Windows, Mac OS X, Android, iOS
تاريخ آخر تعديل: 01/11/2021