The Dark Web is a part of the internet that exists on darknets: overlay networks that use the Internet, but require a special browser, configuration or authorization to access. Due to the layered encryption systems, the identities and locations of Dark Web users stay anonymous and cannot be tracked, making it the ideal environment for cybercriminals seeking to carry out illicit activities.
Recently, researchers have noted criminal groups collaborating and adopting more business-like practices such as offering licensing and software-as-a service (SAS) options for malware kits and selling stolen information in bulk in order to scale their business and maximize revenue.
Why Should You Be Aware of It?
While the Dark Web may seem distant and irrelevant to your everyday business operations, it poses serious risks that can have far-reaching consequences:
Stolen Data Trade: The Dark Web serves as a marketplace for cybercriminals to sell data stolen from breaches, including usernames, passwords, financial information, and sensitive business data. By purchasing this data, hackers can launch targeted attacks against organizations like yours.
Credential Stuffing and Account Takeovers: Cybercriminals often utilize compromised login credentials from data breaches to carry out credential stuffing attacks. By leveraging automated tools, they attempt to gain unauthorized access to your business accounts. Once inside, they can exploit your employees, exfiltrate data, and initiate Business Email Compromise scams and other attacks.
Sale of Exploit Kits and Malware: The Dark Web provides a platform for the sale of malicious software, exploit kits, and hacking tools. These tools can provide cybercriminals with the ability to infiltrate your network and launch sophisticated attacks against your business, including ransomware and phishing campaigns.
Insider Threats: Employees with malicious intent may leverage the Dark Web to sell sensitive company information or collaborate with external criminals. Awareness of the Dark Web can help you implement appropriate security measures to detect and mitigate insider threats.
What Can You Do?
To protect your business from the risks associated with the Dark Web, we recommend the following actions:
- Strengthen Your Security: Implement robust cybersecurity measures, such as multi-factor authentication, strong password policies, regular software updates, and network monitoring. Conduct security awareness training for your employees to educate them about the dangers of the Dark Web and how to identify potential threats.
- Dark Web Monitoring: Consider incorporating a Dark Web Monitoring solution. Our Breach Protection Platform includes Dark Web Monitoring that scans and monitors the Dark Web for mentions of your business’s email addresses and critical information and will alert you if any compromised data is discovered. For personal emails, Google is in the process of expanding its Dark Web Report security feature for all personal Gmail accounts in the US (previously only available to Google One subscribers).
- Incident Response Planning: Develop an incident response plan that includes protocols for handling potential Dark Web-related incidents. This plan should outline steps for containing, investigating, and recovering from a data breach or cyberattack.
We are committed to staying ahead of emerging cybersecurity threats and providing you with the tools and expertise to safeguard your business. Should you have any questions or concerns don't hesitate to reach out to us.