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The Deep Web, Part II

Businesses that rely only on the Surface Web make less-informed decisions and are at risk of failure

In Part I of this blog, I provided a quick introduction to the Deep Web and how it differs from the Dark Web, highlighting the following:

  • Most of the Deep Web is packed with routine private and public sector password-protected archival data. When a webmaster tells a search engine not to look at something, it’s because including it (e.g., programming data) would hurt SEO rankings and be of no interest to readers.
  • The Deep Web includes things like YouTube vids (most of which are not archived for standard search), online books and libraries, e.g., via university/college portals, and Google Docs.
  • The Dark Web, by contrast, is ultimately a neutral domain, with sanctuaries both for serious criminal activity and socially beneficial, even vital, communication. More about that in a minute…

The Deep Web is vital to big data analysis

Because the Surface and Deep Webs are growing exponentially, it’s hard for organizations to make sense of all the critically important available information. That’s a problem because companies need accurate analysis of Big Data to be competitive and to manage their internal operations. Bottom line: businesses that rely only on the Surface Web make less-informed decisions and are at risk of failure.

Another growing benefit of the Deep Web information is broadened interconnectivity between professionals who need complete, easily available updates on university and other research results. The Deep Web, for example, contains comprehensive, hard-to-access information on diseases and epidemics that is of critical importance to public health.

The redeeming potential of the Dark Web

So, the Deep Web is far from mysterious. Nor is the Dark Web limited to terrorist communication, illegal drug transactions and other illicit activities. In fact, it also facilitates services and communication that serve the social good.

On the positive side, the Dark Web–

  • Is home to various e-mail services, file storage and sharing, alternate search engines, human rights social media, chat sites and news outlets;
  • Contains sites that provide anonymous communication for whistleblowers;
  • Provides a relatively secure way for political dissidents and human rights activists to communicate with like-minded individuals, potentially saving lives in countries with oppressive leaders. Facebook or Twitter, by comparison, are easily monitored by authorities; and
  • It’s free of advertisements!

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