Hidden Wiki – What’s all the Commotion About
Every internet savvy person is well aware of Wikipedia.org, the largest free encyclopedia on the internet. But, not many people are aware that there’s also a dark and sinister version of it. Surprised? It’s appropriately called Hidden Wiki and is an amalgamation of encyclopedia articles (in original Wikipedia article style), which link to some really controversial and downright banned content.
How to Access it?
Keeping true to its name, the hidden wiki is not accessible like a common website and through a normal browser. All the aforementioned content is only available on Tor network. To access it, an additional program called Tor browser has to be downloaded which merges itself with a browser like Firefox. Once installed, you’d be able to access hidden services on .onion sites (all the sites available through Tor network bear the .onion extension). Needless to say, the .onion extension bearing sites are not indexed by major search engines and hence don’t show up in a normal search results.
Is it legal?
The question which immediately comes to mind is that if the content available on Tor network is so diabolical, it’s got to be illegal, right? Proponents and supporters of Tor network would cite freedom of speech etc., and it’s true that thousands access it from every corner of the globe for legitimate reasons also. Having said that, there are links on hidden wiki that you want to steer clear of! These links can lead to sites which contain child pornography and infamous Silk Road (website which hooks up potential buyers with drug peddlers). I can’t say this with 100% surety but rumors are that such sites are under surveillance by covert and law enforcing agencies. I have heard people defending Silk Road by saying that it operates under a code of ethics, which restricts selling of certain products like dangerous and hazardous chemicals, but I can’t validate or deny the claim.
How Diabolical can the Content be?
Remaining true to its namesake .onion bearing websites found on “deep web” (another name for hidden wiki) are layered. It doesn’t matter if you are exploring it due to morbid curiosity or really intend to do something with the information or product you obtain from there! One thing is for sure though, the deeper you go the more startled you’d be about what’s on sale. There are firearms of banned caliber; potent poisons and even personal information of people for sale which is a dream come true for identity thieves.
All I would say in the end is tread carefully! Hidden wiki is a dangerous place to traverse.
Beyond the informative and entertaining precincts of the internet we are all familiar with, is a dark and sinister world of contraband and child abuse. It’s tricky, winding and very difficult for authorities to investigate and curb. From time to time revelations about such dark corners of internet are made public and it leaves the common law abiding citizens confounded and flabbergasted.
One of such revelations was made recently when an anonymous hacker gained access to Lolita world, a web site advertised on hidden wiki. This website offered a huge amount of child abuse and pornography to paying pedophiles and lowlifes. The aforementioned anonymous hacker went through proper channel first and approached the hosting company of Lolita world. A demand was put forth to remove the repugnant and detestable material but no heed was paid to it. This prompted the anonymous Samaritans into action and launch a dual pronged attack on the miscreants.
The phase included forcing the hosting company to go offline rendering all the abhorrent material inaccessible. The second phase of the assault involved bypassing the security of Lolita City system and exposing the login details of more than 1000 pedophiles. The “hacktivist” left a very potent warning for all such offenders claiming they would continue to target anyone hosting, promoting or supporting child pornography. For masses unaware of hidden wiki and its unsavory contents, this exposition came as revelatory.
The transgressions of hidden wiki are not just limited to aiding pedophiles. There are contributors (needless to say pedophiles themselves) to it which offer advice on creating new and ironclad websites with the sole purpose of promoting child abuse. Other mind boggling “services” include money laundering, detailed instructions on how to concoct homemade explosives, contract killing and ordering extremely hazardous and restricted chemicals. Architecture wise, the hidden wiki is nothing out of the ordinary or remarkable. Aesthetically, it’s just like any other website where users update links, which are organized category wise.
Scot Terban, an independent security researcher described the origins of hidden wiki as a dark place of convergence where sinister ideas and wares were shared. Coincidentally, Scot was also the first person from the “outside” world to draw attention to hidden wiki and its nefarious contents. Hidden wiki is just like any other black market operation with the exception of being online and almost completely anonymous, he further added.
Since its anonymous participants don’t feel any qualms about sharing, advertising and seeking illegal things, it’s not uncommon to find ads and services like hired assassins. All this anonymity makes it an ideal hunting grounds for pedophiles and lowlife scum.