The Dark Web is often home to lots of data that has been gleaned from data breaches. Usernames, passwords & PII (Personally Identifiable Information). Users of the Dark Web will be privy to information that could be critical to your business’ survival, which could leave you at risk of extortion or worse. The Dark Web is an entity that not many everyday users are aware of, and is one of the remaining mysteries in the IT world. You could think of it as it’s own special Internet, separate from the Google, Facebook and Amazon staples we’re all familiar with.
Cybercriminals can use your details in a number of ways. The most common use of stolen credentials is to use them to log into products and services to glean even more data from you – whether that be financial information or otherwise. Secondly, they could use the credentials as bait and demand a ransom in return for the deletion or return of compromised accounts.
Secure yourselves! Be wary of weak passwords, lack of authentication and lax security measures. User education is just the first step in your journey towards being secure and resilient. You will never be 100% free from cyberattacks, but by mitigating the risk as much as possible, you reduce the chances of your data floating around in the depths of the Dark Web. Think of it like the part of the ocean that is undiscovered by many – this is the Dark Web. Those classic nature documentaries that show a dark abyss with scary looking fish swimming about – it’s a great metaphor for the Dark Web.
The reason that the Dark Web can sometimes be a force to be reckoned with is the unknown uncertainty that it brings. If your data is lost to the Dark Web, unless you’re an expert in traversing it, you won’t really know who has access to your data. In the case of usernames and passwords that’s a bad thing! It goes a long way to protecting yourself by taking advantage of robust passwords and additional authentication methods to boost your defences. In addition, try not to recycle or reuse passwords if possible. This makes it more difficult gain access to multiple services. Just think, if you have the same password for a banking app that you do for a trivial service you may have used once, if somebody finds out the password for that “forgotten” service and tries to use it on everything else registered to your username or email address, things probably won’t turn out that great.
Unfortunately many users on the Dark Web use it for malicious means and so it’s imperative that you understand that you don’t want your credentials in the hands of cybercriminals. From a business aspect, you leave yourself vulnerable to all manner of mishaps if you take for granted cybersecurity and therefore the risk that the Dark Web can impose upon your livelihood.