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The Importance of Dark Web Scanning

In the vast expanse of the internet, a subsegment known as the “dark web” remains hidden from search engines, accessible only through specialized browsers. On these pages, sensitive user information can be sold to malicious actors, making organizational databases a prime target.

Being proactive is critical for any cybersecurity threat, so developers have created scanners to detect sensitive information being sold to businesses to protect their data. But what exactly is the dark web, and how can dark web scanning help you detect if your information is compromised?

What Is the Dark Web?

As its name suggests, the dark web, or “darknet,” is a portion of the internet hidden from standard web browsers and not indexed by search engines. Users need specialized browsers to access these sites, preserving their anonymity. While the dark web isn’t inherently illegal, its clandestine nature has made it a popular platform for illegal activities.

Various illicit goods can be purchased on dark web marketplaces, specifically personal data harvested from data breaches, such as credit card or Social Security numbers. Because legitimate search engines like Google don’t crawl these pages, dark web scanners have been developed to track dark web activity.

What Is Dark Web Scanning?

Dark web scanning refers to a segment of cybersecurity in which a tool or service monitors dark web content to identify specific private data from a company or user. Like search engines, dark web scanners crawl the dark web to gather information based on keywords, patterns, or other indicators of malicious activities and will notify the owners of this data. These notifications are valuable for:

  • Taking remedial steps
  • Assessing vulnerabilities
  • Threat intelligence

How Does Dark Web Scanning Work?

First, data is provided to the company performing the dark web scan so they have something to cross-reference against.  The scanner then combs through lists of stolen data across the dark web (also known as “data dumps”) to identify whether the company data is there. Many businesses engage a managed security services provider with expertise in the dark web. These experts will not only identify compromised information and provide reporting, they’ll also share steps to remediate and prevent further compromises and cybersecurity threats. At TPx, for example, we provide customers with a comprehensive report detailing our findings and actionable insights.

Why Does My Company Need Dark Web Scanning?

Data breaches are at an all-time high and are among the top cybersecurity threats for businesses. Consulting firm Gartner estimates that global security risk and management spending will grow 14% in 2024, or more than $214 billion.

Your business’s cybersecurity is essential for protecting your employees and customers. Because dark web marketplaces trade for sensitive information, an organization’s database is a prime target for malicious actors. Once obtained, this data cannot be removed from the dark web. And, if an attacker gains access without alerting your security measures, you may not be aware that your data has been breached until you scan the dark web.

How Can I Prevent My Data From Ending Up on the Dark Web?

Make sure your employees practice good cybersecurity habits, such as:

Companies that utilized dark web monitoring and threat intelligence reduced the cost of a data breach by an average of $1 million compared to those that did not use these services. Invest in dark web scanning through TPx Security Advisory Services to maximize your vigilance and strengthen your cybersecurity. Contact our experts today.

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