The dark web functions no different than a social network for criminals—with hierarchies, money flows, and user reputations being built and torn down, according to Avi Kasztan, SIXGILL co-founder and an expert in dark web monitoring and intelligence
Inside Dark Web- Much of the mystique surrounding the dark web stems from the fact that for the average cyber citizen, this sinister sliver of the internet is like a digital, third world country few have dared venture into. Information about its inner workings comes as snippets from news reports informing of yet another shocking data breach with millions of users exposed, or some stunning police raid complete with all the sordid details one would expect to find when turning over rocks in an underworld infested with crime.
But like any foreign country, the mystique mostly evaporates once you experience it firsthand. That isn’t to say the reports of crime and exploitative behavior are exaggerated. To be sure, there is plenty of that going on. But it is still just a place with its own cultural norms and trends, and to get a true sense of that culture and what trends may be emerging that threaten your data, it is a good idea to speak to someone whose day job it is to walk its dark marketplaces and listen in on the closed chats of the locals.
Our guide for today’s tour will be Avi Kasztan, co-founder of B2B cyber intelligence company SIXGILL, who is a local for all intents and purposes as unlike most firms offering dark web services as part of a broader cyber offering, SIXGILL specializes exclusively in dark web monitoring and intelligence.
To begin with the basics, we have asked Kasztan who in his opinion should be actively monitoring the dark web. His short answer:
The dark web is home to hardcore cybercrime, he said. It is where criminals plan their activities with a level of collaboration and sophistication hereto unheard of. In his words, the dark web is essentially a social network for criminals. A robust industry with hierarchies, money flows, and user reputations being built (and torn down) on a daily basis. To effectively use the power of social networks, you don’t necessarily have to be actively posting on them. It all depends on your goals. The same applies to the dark web, and Kasztan believes that any company concerned about its assets (especially its human assets) should be monitoring it to make sure they are not missing out on anything critical.