What is Dark Web Threat Intelligence?
Dark Web Threat Intelligence leverages data collection from the deep and dark web to help organizations identify, understand, and mitigate cyber threats that originate from the far corners of the Internet.
With its hidden websites, forums, and illicit marketplaces where cyber criminals can buy, sell, and trade stolen data or the tools to execute digital threats, the deep and dark web are valuable sources of threat intelligence for enterprises seeking a comprehensive approach to digital risk management.
What is the Dark Web?
Dark web threat intelligence may leverage data gathered from both deep web and dark web sources.
The Deep Web includes any and all websites that are not indexed by modern search engines and do not appear in the search engine results pages (SERPs) of providers like Google or DuckDuckGo.
Deep web properties can be accessed using conventional browsers like Google Chrome and Safari, but their absence from the SERPs means that users need prior knowledge of the URL or destination IP address to visit these websites. Password-protected forums, secured email accounts, and subscription websites are all part of the deep web.
The Dark Web, also known as the “invisible web” or the “hidden web”, consists exclusively of websites that do not appear on search engines and cannot be accessed by conventional web browsers.
Users may only access the dark web using special web browsers that encrypt data and enforce user anonymity. This measure is taken to prevent law enforcement, technology companies, and ISPs from keeping track of what happens on the dark web. Cyber criminals may also utilize virtual private networks (VPNs) and routing algorithms to obscure their identity and location when accessing illicit content on the dark web.
Why is Dark Web Threat Intelligence Important?
Because it is largely hidden from public view, and due to the anonymity that it provides, the dark web has become a hotbed for cybercrime and a place where digital threat actors feel safe to trade stolen data, traffic in malicious scripts and software, and openly discuss their plans to carry out cyber attacks against enterprise targets.
Digital threat actors also tend to host cyberattack infrastructure in the deep web, where malicious domains and spoofed websites are hidden from search engines but remain accessible to cybercrime targets using conventional web browsers.
Dark web threat intelligence gives enterprises the opportunity to identify, understand, and mitigate digital threats that originate in parts of the world wide web that are normally hidden from public view.
5 Types of Threats Exposed by Dark Web Threat Intelligence
Dark web threat intelligence enables enterprise organizations to identify, understand, and enact countermeasures against several types of digital threats that originate in the dark web. These threats include, but aren’t limited to the following:
- Software Vulnerabilities and Exploits – Cybercriminals use the dark web to exchange information about known software vulnerabilities and exploits that may be used to attack and infiltrate enterprise targets. Dark web threat intelligence helps organizations identify and patch these vulnerabilities in their own networks before they can be exploited.
- Ransomware-as-a-Service (RaaS) Kits – Cybercriminals on the dark web can buy, sell, or trade RaaS kits that make it easy for someone with minimal technical knowledge to execute a ransomware attack against an enterprise target. Dark web threat intelligence helps enterprises understand the latest TTPs for ransomware and shore up their dark web cybersecurity to prevent a successful attack.
- Exposed or Stolen Credentials – Cybercriminals access illicit marketplaces on the dark web to buy or sell stolen credentials for enterprise networks and systems. Dark web threat intelligence can provide an early warning that credentials have been stolen or exposed, giving enterprises the opportunity to remediate the issue before a large-scale data breach occurs.
- Stolen Data – Following a successful data breach, cybercriminals often access the dark web to traffic in stolen personal data (PII, credit cards, etc.) that can be used to commit fraud or identity theft. Dark web threat intelligence can be used to detect this behavior and alert enterprises that their sensitive data has been stolen.
- Insider Threats – Insider threats are security and data risks that originate from within an organization, such as a disgruntled or opportunistic employee who accesses the dark web to sell enterprise network credentials or access to secure data. Dark web threat intelligence can help organizations detect and remediate these threats before they turn into a costly security incident.
Getting Started with Dark Web Threat Intelligence
Ready to start leveraging dark web threat intelligence to improve your organization’s cybersecurity posture? Here are three ways to get started:
Dark Web Monitoring
Dark web monitoring is a service that continuously monitors deep and dark channels to provide cybersecurity teams with early detection of information leakage, insider threats, and contextual analysis of cyberattacks.
Dark Web Threat Intelligence Feeds
Public, private, and commercial threat intelligence feeds can provide enterprises with a steady stream of new intel on digital threat actors, emerging threats, and other digital risks that appear on the deep and dark web.
Dark Web Threat Intelligence Services
ZeroFOX DarkOps is a global threat hunting and dark web intelligence team with exclusive access to monitor the activities of cyber criminals, agitators, and digital threat actors across thousands of deep and dark web sites and forums. Our DarkOps team delivers early warnings of imminent cyber threats and supports incident response teams with threat actor engagement, breach containment, and IP recovery services.
Detect Deep and Dark Web Cyber Threats with ZeroFOX Threat Intelligence
ZeroFOX provides AI-driven monitoring, actionable threat intelligence, and disruption services to help enterprises identify, detect, and counter cyber threats that originate in the deep and dark web.
Check out our free white paper Dispelling Misconceptions About the Dark Web to learn more about how to identify and counter emerging threats from the deep and dark corners of the web.