The Dark Web

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Type of Resource

Guidance

Publication Date

September 18, 2023

Topic/s

Harmful or inappropriate content  
You may have heard the terms deep web and dark web used interchangeably. But they are two different things with separate meanings. The deep web is any part of the internet that isn’t open and indexed. In other words, it’s websites or pages that won’t show up through internet searches because they aren’t designed to be public.
It is estimated that the dark web makes up 48% of the internet.
The dark web is a part of the internet where things are purposely hidden from view through encryption software, which can hide the identity and location of users. While it may seem like a big and unknowable place, the dark web only makes up a small part of the deep web.

How is it accessed?

What is it used for?

The dark web is used for many things, from trading illegal materials to confidential communication between news outlets and whistle-blowers. Young people can decide to access the dark web for various reasons, which include both legal and illegal motivations:

Should you be worried?

The dark web requires a complex understanding of encryption, computers, and the internet. This means that if a young person does begin to use the dark web, they may not use it long term.

Some young people may hear about the dark web from videos with catchy titles like ’10 disturbing things hidden on the dark web‘ or see it depicted in T.V. shows, like Netflix’s How to Sell Drugs Online (Fast), which may encourage curiosity. If a young person decides to visit the dark web with relatively good intentions, there are still risks that can impact them including:

Top Tips

Visit our Safety Centre to find out more about keeping safe in the online world.

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