A Few Notes From The Dark Side

A Few Notes From The Dark Side

Okay, we don’t usually spend a lot of time promoting other online magazines, but we’re going to make an exception this time. One of our favorite places on the Darknet is Deep.Dot.Web. It’s sort of a news publication about what’s happening in the Onion-sphere.

And it’s doing a pretty darn good job of journalism.

1. Tor, on the remote chance you haven’t met it

You probably know all this, but on the off chance…Tor is a set of technologies that helps keep your activities on the web a secret from those who would prefer it not be—like corporations and intelligence agencies. It is composed of a network that bounces your requests around different servers, making it difficult for anyone to get a lock on your precise location, and a Tor Browser that allows you to enter that network. Thus, you can browse a politically sensitive site… say, something nasty and subversive, like, say, maybe, LiberalResistance.net… without bad guys knowing about it.

Further, there are what’s known as “onion sites,” which can only be accessed from the Tor network. And it is on those onion sites that some of the more interesting things are happening on the web…for good and ill.

And btw, it’s easy to get Tor. Just go to the Tor Project site and download it. A word of caution, however. Even Tor can’t guarantee your privacy if you don’t take some common sense measures (like not letting people stand behind you while you are cruising the web). And for genuine security, you’ll probably want to add a VPN to the mix.

2. Come to the dark side (we don’t have cookies)

Deep.Dot.Web is basically a niche publication for information on the Darknet and its various residents.  You can cheat, and get it on the regular web with your normal browser at https://www.deepdotweb.com/, but we think it is way cooler to go to their onion site here: http://deepdot35wvmeyd5.onion/

A lot of Deep.Dot.Web’s coverage deals with some of the more unsavory aspects of the Darknet…but, then, the Darknet can be a kind of unsavory place. Thus, you’ll see a lot of stories about people getting busted for selling or buying drugs, guns, explosives, or (yes) kiddie porn on the Darknet’s darker reaches.

On the other hand, you can also find a lot of coverage of less controversial stuff, like for instance the current fortunes of Bitcoin and other crypto-currencies, and the technology and politics of privacy and security.

And some of the latter reporting can be really good. Like, for instance, a recent piece posted by Kofi Anash, The State Of Texas Is Selling Personal Information of Citizens. (Non-onion version here.) Yes, it turns out the Lone Star State, that bastion of libertarianism, has been selling information about its citizens to everybody from grocery stores to bill collectors. That comes under the heading of creepy, IourHO.

Another interesting politically-oriented story ran last October, Deputy Attorney General Calls for Government Backdoors, posted by C.Aliens.  (Again, clear web version here.) The story looked at how Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, in a speech at the Naval Academy, called for back doors into all sorts of electronic communications so that the proper authorities could decrypt anything they liked.

That may or may not be a good idea. Certainly, it is hard to defend a right to privacy for vendors of kiddie porn or high explosives. But, still, here at LR Net, we sort of have the feeling that pornographers might be the least of government’s targets in an age of political repression. And isn’t it interesting how the Right is all “libertarian” when it is in its interest to be so, but then drops the idea like a live grenade when it isn’t.

3. Give it a glance

But, getting back to Deep.Dot.Web, it is definitely an interesting and well-written news publication.  Give it a glance when you have a free moment.

Oh, and also…consider getting that copy of Tor.

It could all too easily be a useful thing…

When the Big Orange Brother may be watching.

~mjt