The dark web is the part of the internet that exists on dark networks only accessible by means of special software, configurations or authorisations. It is a subsection of the deep web; the portion of the internet that is not indexed by search engines.
Private computer networks can use the dark web to communicate and conduct business anonymously. Dark networks include small social networks and larger, more popular networks like Tor or Freenet. Sites on these networks are only accessible using special browsers. One example is Tor browser and Tor-accessible sites with the domain .onion.
People often use the dark web for transactions on marketplaces maintained on these networks. Other uses for the dark web include file storage, the sharing of information privately, torrent sharing, or discussion boards without the content being available to the general public.
Dark Web and Bitcoin
Bitcoin is one of the primary cryptocurrencies used on the Dark Web used due to its relative anonymity. The combination of the dark web and anonymous cryptocurrencies allows private buyers to purchase goods or services from private sellers without using formal financial systems and regulations.
This has enabled the creation of viable marketplaces which sell goods and services, some of which are illegal or regulated on other marketplaces on the internet. These include drugs, personal identifying information, software and counterfeit goods.