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Research Project Assignment: Dark Web

Question

Task:In this assessment, you are required to provide a complete report of your research project, that you chose in Assessment 3 (Research Project Abstract) by discussing the following aspects:

  • Overview of the topic
  • Relevant technologies and applications of those technologies
  • Highlighting the challenges/problems in your chosen research area
  • Identification of any gaps in the literature by:
    • discussing areas/issues that you believe have been addressed in the current literature;
    • highlighting areas/issues that have not been addressed or adequately addressed; and
    • discussing your view(s) on the issue(s) that you see as being critical.
  • Summarize the future research directions based on the identified research gaps

Answer

Abstract : Dark Web is that area of the World Wide Web that not many people are aware of. This part of the internet is associated with various dangerous elements that are conducted in the hidden environment like software hacking, drugs activities and counterfeiting of money. The aim of the research project is to identify the impact of the dark web on the prevailing internet governance. The research project assignment would highlight how there is a contrasting difference between the surface web that is accessed by the majority of the internet users and dark web that is intentionally kept hidden from the general public. It is the subset of the deep web that serves as the key platform of the internet users who need to maintain their anonymity so that their activities cannot be monitored.

The purpose of the research project assignment on the dark web is to understand how the unauthorized access of users to the deep web can have serious consequences which are not only restricted to the virtual reality. Various challenges arise in this online setting that need to be managed effectively so that the high level of risks and uncertainties associated with the dark web can be managed in a better way. There is the need for a robust security system so that the vulnerability of the internet user can be minimized to a certain extent and their exposure before the cyber attackers and hackers can be handled effectively. With the advent of the technology, the dark web is a humongous issue that needs to be resolved on priority. The research project assignment would help to capture the main security aspects that can be strengthened to minimize the risks associated with the dark web.

Keywords: Dark web, surface web, deep web, malware, Tor, illegal

Overview: Dark Web
Dark Web is a part of World Wide Web that is not indexed by the search engines. There are several illegal tasks and activities that are carried out in the hidden environment of this section of the web. Software hacking, counterfeiting of money, exchange of drugs, etc. are some of the primary activities that are carried out using Dark Web. There is a contrasting difference between surface web and dark web (Sparapani, 2016). The aim of the the research project assignment is to identify the impact of the dark web and the set of activities that are carried out in it to prevent the illegal tasks.

Technologies & Applications
There are certain technologies and applications that are relevant to dark web and allow the user to access the same. An anonymizing browser called Tor browser is needed to access dark web. In this browser, the client’s request is routed across various proxy servers so that the IP address is untraceable. There are dark web search engines that are also present but all of them need to maintain constantly shifting landscape. Dark web sites end in .onion as compared to the regular websites ending in .com, .org, etc. Blockchain technology has assisted in giving rise to the dark web as the exchange of money can be easily done using cryptocurrencies like Bitcoins.

Challenges/Problems with Dark Web
Security and privacy of the users and their information sets is one of the primary challenges that come up with the emergence of dark web. The challenge is to enhance the security system to control and prevent the risks and concerns that are present around the dark web.

Literature Review: Areas addressed & not addressed and Critical Issues
The authors have covered the meaning and details around dark web in the research work. The architecture of the dark web consists of three phases in which the queries are placed in the first phase, form identification, filling, and submission is done in the second phase, and results are displayed in the last phase. The authors have also addressed the details of the Tor browser which is used to access the dark web sites. The comparison between the surface web and dark web is also covered along with the statistics around the latter. There are currently over 200,000 dark web sites that exist. There are six levels that exist on the web and the dark web is present at the fourth level. The authors have also addressed the legal activities that can be carried out on this section of the web. However, they have not addressed the mechanisms that may be used to prevent the illegal activities and security concerns (Patel, Shankar and Patel, 2017).

The authors have conducted research on the negative impacts of the dark web on internet governance and cyber security. The authors have covered the cybercrimes that occur in dark web as illegal selling of drugs and exotic animals. Silk Road is a marketplace that is used for such activities on the dark web. Stolen goods & information, murder, gambling, terrorism, illegal financial exchanges, hacktivism, and arms trafficking are some of the other illegal tasks that are executed. The authors have covered the mechanisms that need to be used to monitor the dark web. Customer data monitoring, use of distributed hash tables, social site monitoring, hidden service monitoring, marketplace profiling, and semantic analysis are some of the areas that are addressed (Chertoff & Simon, 2015). A strong and guaranteed mechanism to prevent the malicious activities on the dark web is still not discovered. It is one of the critical issues that need to be addressed.

Dark web is a part of deep web in which there are illegal activities carried out. The authors have described the legal and illegal activities that take place in deep web. There are hidden services executed on the dark web in which the user identity is kept anonymous. Hidden Wiki is one of the sites which are used to access the services on the dark web. Adoption research database is one of the databases that are used (Hawkins, 2016). Silk Road is an online marketplace that is used by the users on the dark web to sell drugs, malware, etc. The author has addressed the issues and concerns around the dark web and the elements that are associated with the same. However, the mechanisms that may be followed to address these concerns are not covered and addressed in the research work.

Exploration of the deep web is the topic of research for the authors in the research work. A comparison between surface web and deep web, and dark web and deep web has been presented in the research. Malware trade is one of the major issues associated with the deep web and it is conducted in the dark web section. VAWTRAK is a banking Trojan that is spread to the users and their systems through phishing emails. CryptoLocker is a ransomware that is also emerged out of the dark web (Frediani, 2016). Exchange of illicit drugs is done using the dark web. Law enforcement on the deep web is not easy as everything is already encrypted. Attribution and fluctuation are the two other properties that make it difficult to enforce and develop laws around these activities. Security vendors and the end-users need to be made aware of the dark web and the practices that they may follow to prevent such issues.

The authors have addressed the explanation of the deep web by covering the five modules as URLs acquisition, indexing, page scouting, enrichment, and qualitative plus quantitative analytics. The authors have covered the issues around deep web in terms of the illegal activities that are executed. Passports and citizenships are put on sale by creating fake identities and documents. There are stolen accounts of the users that are also put on sale. There are hitman-for-hire and assassination services that are carried out on the dark web. These issues have been addressed in the research work (Balduzzi and Ciancaglini, 2018). However, the primary need is to come up with the mechanisms to control and avoid the risks.

The author has directed research on the negative effects of the dark web on web administration and digital security. The creators have secured the cybercrimes that happen in dark web as illicit offering of medications and intriguing creatures. Silk Road is a commercial centre that is utilized for such exercises on the dark web. Stolen merchandise and data, kill, betting, psychological warfare, unlawful money related trades, hacktivism, and arms trafficking are a portion of the other illicit undertakings that are executed. The creators have secured the components that should be utilized to screen the dark web. Client information observing, utilization of conveyed hash tables, social site checking, shrouded benefit checking, commercial centre profiling, and semantic examination are a portion of the territories that are tended to (Finklea, 2017). A solid and ensured system to keep the malevolent exercises on the dark web is as yet not found. It is one of the basic issues that should be tended to.

Dark web has emerged as one of the primary matters of concern. The author has covered the history of the activities carried out on the dark web to determine the level of governance and security controls that are needed. The details of the laws enforced around the dark web can provide an understanding on the policies that would be successful. The role of the government is extremely critical for controlling the illegal activities on the dark web and the area has been explored by the author. The set of most appropriate methods that can be used have also been illustrated by the author (Chertoff, 2017). The critical areas and issues that need to be addressed include the illegal selling and exchange of malware, drugs, and other goods, hacktivism, assassination, and terrorism.

Future Research Directions
Decentralization is one of the mechanisms that may be applied to avoid the issues around operator trust. It will remove the middleware and may act as a mechanism to put a check on the illegal activities that are carried out on the dark web. The future research may be directed towards the exploration of decentralization mechanisms for controlling the illegal tasks and activities associated with the dark web. The awareness among the users and the application vendors is also one of the areas along with law enforcement and strategies to be formed by the government. The use of technical tools that can provide security and privacy are also some of the topics that may be covered.

Conclusion
Dark web has led to the conduction of illegal tasks and activities that need to be controlled and prevented. The majority of the research work that is done in this area is in the exploration of the issues associated with dark web. However, little has been published on the improvement and correction measures that shall be adopted to put a check on the illegal activities. There are technical advancements that are being done that shall be explored to understand the prevention and control measures. The use of governance to control the activities would also be essential. The research project assignments are being prepared by our IT assignment help experts from top universities which let us to provide you a reliable assignment help online service.

References
Balduzzi, M. and Ciancaglini, V. (2018). Cybercrime in the Deep Web. [online] Blackhat.com. Available at: https://www.blackhat.com/docs/eu-15/materials/eu-15-Balduzzi-Cybercrmine-In-The-Deep-Web-wp.pdf [Accessed 17 Sep. 2018].

Chertoff, M. (2017). A public policy perspective of the Dark Web. Journal of Cyber Policy, 2(1), pp.26-38.

Chertoff, M. and Simon, T. (2015). The Impact of the Dark Web on Internet Governance and Cyber Security. [online] Cigionline.org. Available at: https://www.cigionline.org/sites/default/files/gcig_paper_no6.pdf [Accessed 17 Sep. 2018].

Finklea, K. (2017). Dark Web. [online] Fas.org. Available at: https://fas.org/sgp/crs/misc/R44101.pdf [Accessed 17 Sep. 2018].

Frediani, C. (2016). Deep Web, going beneath the surface. Freedom from Fear, 2016(10), pp.18-21.

Hawkins, B. (2016). Under The Ocean of the Internet - The Deep Web. [online] Sans.org. Available at: https://www.sans.org/reading-room/whitepapers/covert/ocean-internet-deep-web-37012 [Accessed 17 Sep. 2018].

Patel, H., Shankar, M. and Patel, R. (2017). Underneath the tip of the Iceberg: The Deep Web. International Journal of Recent Trends in Engineering and Research, 3(5), pp.70-76.

Patel, H., Shankar, M. and Patel, R. (2017). Underneath the tip of the Iceberg: The Deep Web. International Journal of Recent Trends in Engineering and Research, 3(5), pp.70-76.

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