10 Things You Didn’t Know About The Dark Net

10. The Mighty Tor

The U.S. Navy wanted a way to use the Internet anonymously so its people couldn’t be tracked by the nation’s enemies.  It developed software called The Onion Router or TorBrowser, the gateway to Tor Hidden Services on the Dark Net.  “Onion” was chosen because its encryption properties were likened to the layers of an onion being peeled away.
10. The Mighty Tor

9. Internet Pirates

One of the many pastimes on the Dark Net is the unauthorized distribution of copyrighted intellectual property. The music and movie industries have been fighting pitched battles with pirates for decades, but more recently the Dark Net has become an important safe harbor where they can sell their illicit treasure.
9. Internet Pirates

8. We Are in Control

There have been rumors bouncing around the Internet for years that beyond its intelligence activities on the Dark Net, it has set up a back up command and control infrastructure there. The theory is that the Pentagon needed to hedge its bets knowing that its first line command and control systems could be in jeopardy in the event of a serious cyber attack. It’s always better to have redundant systems when faced with a range of dangerous threats.
8. We Are in Control

7. Gone Trolling

Trolls insinuate themselves in the recesses of the Dark Net waiting for their next victims. These scofflaws are not of the Lord of the Rings variety, but more on the idea of renegade fisherman, dragging virtual baited hooks through the flotsam until they get a nibble. Dark Net trolls would likely reject this characterization, preferring to see themselves as web cowboys roaming the wild net unfettered by the conformist Surface Web.
7. Gone Trolling

6. Cryptocurrency

Like any niche community, the denizens of the Dark Net have their own way of doing and not doing things. One of the things they don’t do is use money. You’d have to be pretty naive to put anything personal on the Dark Net, let alone credit or banking information. In what’s being called a “bitcoin heist,” drug dealers reportedly lost as much as $12 million in bitcoins held in escrow when the drug marketplace Evolution Market disappeared from the Dark Net overnight.
6. Cryptocurrency

5. A Darker Shade of Black

The Internet is all about freedom of expression, but with this freedom comes the potential for abuse. The Dark Net has become a haven to some of the darkest behavior, especially when it comes to disturbing content involving minors.
5. A Darker Shade of Black

4. Islamic State in Cyberspace

Unfortunately, some members of Islamic State have prodigious cyber skills, using their talents to distribute propaganda and recruit followers. One of the reasons counterterrorism officials have had trouble taking down IS sites is that they can be hard to find. The same encryption technology used by drug dealers, spies and pedophiles is being used by Militant Islamist groups to evade detection on the Internet.
4. Islamic State in Cyberspace

3. The Armory

Weapons of all kind are big sellers on the Dark Net. The Armory is the site most familiar to people probably because it is an offshoot of the the infamous Silk Road drug bazaar. Many people assume the Armory’s operations are illegal, but the U.S. Justice Department admits there is no federal law outlawing online gun sales. The site offers everything from Glock handguns to AK-47 rifles and hand grenades.
3. The Armory

2. Silk Road

Ross Ulbricht was sentenced to life in prison on May 29, 2015 in a U.S. Federal Court for his conviction on charges related to operating the Dark Net drug site known as Silk Road. Prosecutors alleged Ulbricht, referred to as “the kingpin of a worldwide digital drug trafficking enterprise,” had solicited several murders for hire.
2. Silk Road

1. Anonymous

Hackers are a big part of the Dark net, selling their expertise to anyone who will pay. But these mercenary hackers for hire are small potatoes compared to the shadowy group known as “Anonymous.” How many people comprise the group? Where are they? And what is their real agenda? All remain open questions.
1. Anonymous