As the term “dark web” enters the general lexicon, individuals and companies are becoming aware of the threats that exist in the parts of the Internet not found in search engines. The reality is that the vast majority of the world wide web isn’t indexed or logged by any traditional searchable methods. In some cases, it’s simply not found in search engines (the deep web), but in others, it’s being hidden purposely (the dark web). The dark web is the host to the Internet’s most frequent illegal activity and all the by-products of that activity that can be shared or sold. It’s also where major threats to your business can be found and exploited.
What’s on the Dark Web?
The results of the malicious activity affecting today’s businesses can often be found on the dark web. In many cases, they’re login credentials. Billions of login pairs (usernames and related passwords) can be found on the dark web and purchased by other criminals for just a few dollars. That minuscule investment can buy access to sensitive data, bank account information, and other tools that can harm the individual and their company. And since bad actors don’t alert their victims to the theft, the affected parties might not even be aware of the vulnerability.
In other cases, stolen data – such as customer or client lists, proprietary information, sensitive internal documents, legal contracts, and private communication records – can be distributed, shared, and sold easily, and anonymously.
Consequences of Losing Data
Losing valuable information and having it appear on the dark web has serious ramifications that range from embarrassing to threatening your company’s ability to do business. Your reputation is at stake when clients find out their information appeared on the dark web, no matter how trivial that information was. Logins can be used to delete or steal information or to instigate other phishing attacks in the future. And you’ll have to spend resources to find out how the breach occurred and how to prevent it from happening again.
Unfortunately, the above possibilities are best-case scenarios. Losing sensitive client or vendor data could put you in legal jeopardy and terminate important business relationships. Losing proprietary information could put you at a competitive disadvantage for years to come. Your company’s bank accounts and credit could be compromised, your data could be ransomed and your entire network could be held hostage, all because one criminal sold your information to another criminal in a part of the Internet that you never monitored, and possibly never knew existed.
Dark Web Monitoring and Imperium
Utilizing dark web monitoring won’t prevent your data from being compromised, and it won’t remove that information if it’s found. But it will do what you can’t do currently: Monitor hidden parts of the Internet and determine if your information is for sale there. If logins or other data are found, you’ll be alerted and can secure those vulnerabilities so no further damage is done. The only thing worse than becoming a victim of cybercrime is becoming a victim and not knowing it, allowing the bad actors to continue threatening your business in various ways. Nobody wants to find their information available for purchase on the dark web. But if it’s there, you need to know.
Imperium Data Services can help implement state-of-the-art dark web monitoring tools, so your business stays ahead of the curve in mitigating the damage from cybercrime. For more information, use our contact page.