If you’re looking for such a thing as a hidden wiki, you must already be familiar with the deep web and dark web concepts. What is the hidden wiki is a kind of strange, yet obvious question. By definition, a wiki is essentially a website or database that was developed in a collective attempt by a certain community of users or private organizations that let any registered user edit existing and add new information to the site.
The hidden wiki is pretty much the same thing. However, it differs from conventional wikis on the Clearnet. The hidden wiki contains information that is part of the darknet. The only way to access hidden wikis is by loading them in the Tor browser that grants you access to the dark web and maintains your anonymity.
The Ballad of the Hidden Wiki
From the very beginning, The Hidden Wiki was managed through a .onion domain that is only accessible through the Tor browser. Generally, the content provided on this website represents a directory of deep web and dark web links to a wide range of hidden services and markets that aren’t accessible in the Clearnet through Google, Yahoo, and the like. The very first version of The Hidden Wiki surfaced sometime in the second half of 2011 and was strongly associated with illegal activities and content, such as black hat services, drug dealing, arms trafficking, hacking services, etc.
Conventional search engines index only about 2% of the entire World Wide Web. The rest of the Internet is contained in the deep web and the darknet. That means billions upon billions of pages and incredible amounts of information that isn’t available anywhere on the Clearnet. The Hidden Wiki is your gateway to this information. It’s not exactly safe, even if you use top-level VPN software along with Tor and have a ProtonMail account. You are always at risk of compromising your identity and various sensitive data that may get you in serious trouble, from bankruptcy to criminal prosecution. Anyway, the deep web and the dark web are not exactly the same thing, although The Hidden Wiki contains information from both of these parts of the Internet.
Deep Web in a Nutshell
So, as we already know, the deep web is the part of the World Wide Web that is unindexed by conventional search engines on the Clearnet. In order to access the deep web, you need to have special software that also has to be configured in a particular way. Once again, the deep web is not the dark web also known as the darknet. We are going to take a closer look at it further in the article. As for now, let’s see what makes content a part of the deep web.
- Contextual web. These are the pages that contain content associated with various access issues;
- Dynamic content. Dynamic content pages can only be accessed through a web query or form submission;
- Content with limited access. These websites limit access to their pages via ROBOTS Exclusion Standard and CAPTCHAs;
- Non-text/HTML content. This refers to the pages that contain textual content encrypted in multimedia formats;
- Private web. These websites require special registration and relevant login credentials in order to get access to their resources and content;
- Software. This refers to the content that can’t be accessed without special software, such as I2P or Tor browser. Most of this can be categorized as darknet content;
- Unlinked content. This includes web pages that aren’t linked by Clearnet search engines. The web crawlers can’t access these pages’ content. There are no backlinks on these pages either.
Darknet in a Nutshell
Since The Hidden Wiki includes both the deep web and the darknet, it’s time for us to switch our attention to the latter. The dark web is the part of the World Wide Web that can only be accessed via special software and using particular authorization (registration in darknet email services, such as ProtonMail). The darknet is all about unconventional types of communication ports and protocols. This area of the Internet can be divided into two principal categories:
- Friend-to-friend network. This refers to a peer-to-peer network, where users connect with each other directly. They authenticate via digital signatures and passwords. One can’t possibly know who the other users are outside of their own segment of the network, which allows building a solid F2F net and maintaining the anonymity of its users at the same time;
- Private network. This is, probably, the most canonical example of a network that can only be accessed through the Tor browser. This is the darkest, most unpredictable part of the World Wide Web often associated with illegal activities, such as arms trafficking, hacking services, confidential files sale, drug dealing, and other, much more terrifying things.
So, there you have it – The Hidden Wiki is essentially a hub that leads to the two shady segments of the World Wide Web described above.
A Few Things to Remember
Before you decide to dive into either the deep web or the darknet, there are several things you should note and do in order to protect your privacy and anonymity and avoid potential legal troubles. By the way, you still don’t know how to access The Hidden Wiki. First of all, as we’ve mentioned above, you need to install the Tor browser and set it up. When you’re all set, you need to introduce The Hidden Wiki link (yup, just typing ‘hidden wiki’ in the input field won’t lead you anywhere), which is kind of twisted and makes no sense: https://zqktlwi4fecvo6ri.onion/. But! Even before that, here’s what you should do at all times when accessing the dark web or even the deep web:
- Always use a reliable browser, such as Tor (best of them up to date);
- Follow the online directions and load links cautiously. The Hidden Wiki is an incredibly large database of all kinds of data, so running into something extremely disturbing, at the very least, or even something prosecuted by the International Law is just one click away.
At the same time, there are certain things you should remember not to do when surfing the deep web or the darknet:
- Never confuse the deep web with the darknet. The darknet is a part of the deep web, but with an inclination into more dangerous activities. The content on both the deep web and the dark web is basically legal to access as long as you stay away from illegal activities;
- Never introduce your personal data. Never click suspicious links. Always read short descriptions of the links you find on The Hidden Wiki in order to stay safe and off the thin ice.
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