The Dark Web, a hidden portion of the Internet not accessible through conventional search engines, represents only a fraction of the total Internet. Yet, it is still estimated to be more than 500 times larger than the “surface Web,” which most people think of as “the Internet.”
Within the Dark Web, users can operate anonymously, which encourages criminals to perform nefarious activities, including selling or exchanging stolen corporate or personal data. Although some of the data found on the Dark Web is due to imprudent data sharing by individuals, that is not a primary source of data exposure. Not only have organizational data breaches exposed billions of records (188 billion records in the first half of 2021 alone), but nearly 4,000 government breaches exposed another 356 million records.
One of the most striking examples occurred in June 2021, when LinkedIn discovered that data associated with 700 million of its users had been posted on a Dark Web forum. That one exposure alone impacted more than 90% of its user base.
Your Data Is on the Dark Web — What’s Next?
Once personally identifiable information (PII) is on the Dark Web, there is really nothing anyone can do to remove it. In fact, since it is generally shared and reused widely, its recapture is essentially impossible. Here at Carmichael Consulting Solutions, we take a more focused approach:
- Scan the Dark Web to see if our client’s personal or corporate information is there.
- If it is, notify them so management and employees can change their passwords and other identifiable information.
To help our clients identify if, or when, their data or that of their employees shows up on the Dark Web, we offer a Dark Web Monitoring service. Powered by both human and machine intelligence and incorporating powerful search capabilities to continually scour the Dark Web, our service proactively monitors the space, remaining on alert for your organization’s compromised credentials 24/7/365.
Once we identify and analyze a problem, we notify you of trouble quickly. Here’s how:
- Our service monitors more than 500 distinct Internet relay chatroom (IRC) channels, 600,000 private websites, and 600 Twitter feeds. It also executes 10,000 refined queries daily.
- When we scan the Dark Web, we look for our clients’ top-level email domains to ensure the broadest coverage possible.
- When we discover a credential, we harvest it and alert our clients of the issue. That enables firms and their personnel to change passwords, user names and other PII that will hamper the use of the stolen credentials to access your accounts.
Our experts also assist clients in determining the severity of the breach and what additional measures should be taken to secure their PII and corporate intellectual property.
As a further safeguard, two of our Managed IT Services offerings, Strongbox and Vault, include ongoing Dark Web scanning as part of the package.
To learn more about our Dark Web Monitoring service and how we can put it to work reducing risk in your firm, call 678-719-9671 (choose Option 2) or email [email protected]. To explore the protections incorporated in the two Managed IT Services packages mentioned above (including employee awareness training ¬— a critical function in the current threat environment), visit https://carmichaelconsulting.net/managed-it-services/.