Dark web monitoring tools help you proactively protect your digital security. These will warn you if your personal information leaks to take preventive action in time.
We interact with only a tiny portion of the internet. While nobody has concrete data about it, approximately 10% of the internet is open to the average user. This is called the open web or surface web which search engines index.
The rest 90% is known as the Deep web. The majority of it is databases, academic publications, private documents, etc., which we have little to no business peeking into.
What is the Dark Web?
A smaller fraction of the deep web, less than 1% of the overall internet, is perceived as the dark web which mostly hosts unlawful activities.
This constitutes selling hardcore drugs, illegal goods, private credentials, and many more things that are prohibited by law.
These illicit trade channels generally have an escrow system in place and operate with cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin for online anonymity.
Interestingly, we can’t access the dark web with standard browsers; instead, you need something like Tor.
The web address to these dark web websites generally doesn’t make any sense and ends with .onion/ in comparison to the .com, .net, etc., we normally see.
Put simply, we don’t have anything to do with the dark web as standard internet users.
However, dark web monitoring tells us if there is anything of concern to protect ourselves in the event of a data breach.
Dark Web Monitoring Tools
These tools constantly go through data breaches to check for our identity documents, credit card numbers, addresses, phone numbers, medical accounts, social media accounts, etc., and alert us in case anything related to us is ‘available’ on the dark web.
1Password is a premium password manager which also doubles as a dark web monitoring tool.
As a password manager, it’s extremely secure and user-friendly. It is powered with industry-leading features like AES-256-bit encryption, brute force protection, data encryption in transit and at rest, and more.
You can check out the complete set of features in this 1Password breakdown.
On the dark web front, 1Password Watchtower is linked with the HIBP tool to collect information about anything important that’s exposed. It immediately alerts if it finds user-related information in the HIBP database.
1Password doesn’t have a free version, but you can try this with its 14-day free trial on its personal and business plans.
LastPass is another password manager which comes with an in-built dark web monitor. This is similarly powerful with AES-256-bit encryption, vault health check, encrypted file storage, and native applications for major platforms.
You can simply input the email addresses, and LastPass will be on guard. It alerts you via the registered email address about any data breach.
In addition, you can access the security dashboard for the overall health of your password vault. This helps you identify weak passwords and also indicates exposed credentials.
LastPass has a free forever version. However, the dark web scans come with the premium version you can try for 30 days for free.
Good Virtual Private Networks are excellent security products people opt for to stay digitally anonymous and access blocked content.
NordVPN needs no introduction in the VPN industry. We are talking about a top-class product, a slick user interface, blazing-fast speeds, and an envious geo-unblocking record.
Like all other tools discussed yet, this also runs in the background. You get informed immediately if anything associated with your NordVPN email surfaces in the dark web territories.
Though NordVPN has no free version (as most VPNs haven’t), you can try this risk-free with its 30-day money-back guarantee.
Norton 360 straightaway feels powerful about protecting much more than just email addresses and credit card numbers.
This comes in two flavors: Norton 360 and Norton 360 LifeLock.
The Norton 360 ones let you include your driver’s license number, your mother’s maiden name, five insurance ID numbers, five email addresses, five numbers, ten bank account numbers, etc., for the dark web scans.
The LifeLock subscription adds your social security number, date of birth, and name to the list.
Besides, Norton 360 offers antivirus, cloud backup, a password manager, parental control, a VPN, etc.
Conclusively, it really is 360-degree protection you can subscribe to while enjoying its 60-day full refund guarantee.
Keeper BreachWatch comes as an addon with its password manager and other services. This web monitoring tool simply scans saved passwords against what’s leaked on the dark side of the internet.
Subsequently, you get an alert to change the compromised credential as soon as possible.
In addition, BreachWatch identifies weak entries in your password vault and recommends changing them in advance.
Besides, its password manager is already a well-known product that also has a restricted free version.
Finally, Keeper password manager has native applications for most platforms and a 30-day free trial you can opt to check its suitability.
There is no reason to fear!
Though the dark web is home to dangerous activities, you don’t have anything to panic about as a normal internet user.
The end goal of this article is to tell about dark web monitoring tools you can use as an individual.
Such tools inform you as soon as your personally identifiable information surfaces online to take precautionary action in time.
As a thumb rule to online safety, use strong passwords and deploy two-factor authentication wherever applicable.
But we aren’t done yet. And we have this interesting article about the worth of your personal information on the dark web to tell you some revealing facts.