Get Ahead of Cyber-Threats with Dark Web Monitoring

Cyber Security

One of the most daunting threats to any business is having your data stolen and then leaked or sold on the dark web. The dark web is a shadowy part of the internet inaccessible to most users.  

The dark web can be a threat to anyone. According to statistics from Lookout, 80% of consumers have had their emails leaked on the dark web. But it’s not just emails; it’s credit card information that gets compromised as well. NordVPN reports more than 4 million card details are available on the dark web. Anyone could fall victim to breaches and compromises. However, services such as dark web monitoring can help businesses be more aware and take proactive measures.


What is the Dark Web?

The dark web refers to encrypted online content inaccessible through standard search engines. The content is intentionally hidden and only accessible via special software and browsers, which conceal website operators and users to ensure anonymity and untraceability. Many dark web websites are created by scammers to access sensitive data or illegal goods, and have the ability to disappear and be immediately untraceable.

Cyber-criminals can use the dark web to buy credit card numbers, counterfeit money, stolen subscription credentials, and software to help break into other people’s computers. It can also be used to hire someone to hack into another’s computer or purchase usernames and passwords.

The dark web only continues to grow along with the ways criminals can get access to your sensitive information. Educating your business on the dark web and researching ways to ensure your vulnerabilities are monitored to combat these potential breaches and compromises is crucial.


What Does Dark Web Monitoring Entail?

Dark web monitoring entails tracking places on the dark web where your information is sold and traded. Essentially, like a search engine, your business’s corporate email addresses and general information, such as the company name and industry, are monitored on millions of sites. If any of your information hits on any shady sites, your designated company members who manage threats are immediately notified.

When a threat is detected, you’ll be prompted to change passwords if they’ve been leaked or even change credit/debit cards if those numbers have been leaked or sold. Private data such as passwords and card numbers can often be gathered from social media sites. Sometimes end users could have passwords compromised by using the same passwords for everything, such as for their personal Netflix, Amazon, or social accounts, and thus use the same passwords for business accounts. Businesses must ensure their corporate usernames and passwords are private and not utilized elsewhere, which would be easy for hackers to access.

Standard techniques and tools for monitoring the dark web can include:

  • Web Crawlers: Computer programs/bots searching the internet or search engines and cataloging what comes up in your search results.
  • Keyword Searches: This tool searches for common phrases and words associated with your business that have been explored.
  • Machine Learning Algorithms: Pieces of code that assist with monitoring and analyzing complex data that might contain your sensitive information.

These tools can help detect and prevent cyber threats. By utilizing these techniques, your business can proactively address and prepare for a threat before it even occurs.


Why is it Important to Businesses?

Monitoring the dark web has become increasingly crucial for businesses and individuals alike. Cyber threats and data breaches are prevalent on the dark web, and early detection is vital to prevent significant losses. Monitoring the dark web can provide early warning of cyber threats and data breaches, allowing businesses and individuals to take preventive measures. Moreover, dark web monitoring can help identify stolen data, compromised accounts, and fraudulent activities.

Compromised credentials can be some of the fastest paths for cyber-attacks. Nearly 60% of all cyber-attacks stem from a compromised credential. It’s the entryway into your network. There are many ways to help protect your network, but on the front end, you want to make sure you lower your risk as much as possible by conducting these reports and monitoring.


How Can Usherwood Help?

At Usherwood, we offer clients free Dark Web scans as part of our initial Tech evaluation. We continue to offer it as an included service for all our managed IT clients. We stand by a proactive approach of dealing with threats before they even occur, saving our clients stress, time, and money. For more information on dark web monitoring and what we can do to help protect your business, visit our Get a Tech Evaluation form.

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About Darrian Breedlove, Content Writer

Darrian Breedlove is Usherwood's Content Writer. She manages Usherwood's message by integrating educational content into our company culture.