The Dark Web has officially reached over 2.7 Million daily users for the first time in its history. With general censorship, a larger community looking to keep their lives private, and cybercrimes reaching all-time highs. The Tor browser is under pressure. That being said, the amount of users only seems to grow more and more. What are they all using it for?
Darkweb Users On The Rise
Contrary to popular belief, the Darknet is not a scary place where you’ll magically find yourself on the FBI’s most wanted. In many cases, it’s a safer place than the clear net, as its primary focus sits on censorship-free and anonymous Internet usage. The Darknet as a whole only comprises an estimated 5% of the entire Internet.
The darknet is a “Layer of informations you can only access through overlay networks”, hence the name “The Onion Router” (Onion Layers.) Although the Tor browser’s primary use is for accessing darkweb pages, it’s still capable of reaching clearnet websites.
In fact, Facebooks .onion URL (facebookwkhpilnemxj7asaniu7vnjjbiltxjqhye3mhbshg7kx5tfyd.onion/)
is possibly the most used website (non-search engine) on the Tor Browser.
The TOR Browser has gained popularity primarily due to major censorship in Middle Eastern countries and China. Their largest volumes come from Russia. Using Tor, users can easily browse websites without revealing their location and IP addresses. All of this could be considered “illegal”.
So when we hear things like “56.8% of Dark Web activities are illegal” we’re really speaking about a bunch of users scrolling through websites available in most countries in the world.
We can’t deny that the Darknet is used for nefarious activities. Hundreds of thousands use the darknet to view, access, and participate in harmful and dangerous activities. But when we hear things like this
“Thus, it’s estimated that over half of the 2.5 million daily Dark Web visitors in 2023 have participated in illegal activities. Even more so alarming is that this number is on the rise; as of April 2023 this figure rose by 200,000 to 2.7 million daily Dark Web users.”
It’s a truly bloated number that lacks the necessary context. Only about 2% of Tor users use the browser for accessing the dark web.
Who Uses The Darknet The Most?
One interesting fact that has come from this recent information is that those most familiar with the Dark Web are individuals from BRICS countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa. )
At least 28% of all Darknet visitors are from these countries, with Russia taking the top place above all. Next in line came Latin America and the Asia Pacific region, where it’s estimated 26% of the users are from these countries, and finally, the Middle East and Africa regions with 23%. Another crazy fact is that over 80% of darknet users are male.
Known .Onion Link Statistics
According to a Cryptolitik study, there are over 5200 known Darknet Onion links for various websites, and only 1,547 were marked as “Illicit” or involved in illegal activities.
Drugs and Finance websites such as Darknet Markets and Carding services were the most popular types of Darknet onion links. But It’s interesting to see alternative popular websites. Once again this proves how governments can easily paint an incorrect picture of how the Darknet and Tor network is used.
The most popular items for sale on the Darkweb include Paypal accounts at $200 per 50 accounts. There are also many verified crypto accounts from KYC exchanges up for sale. They fetch a high price of atleast $150 to $250 per account.
Other popular websites include crypto mixers and hacking services. Check out our article “15 Darknet Market Statistics & Facts That Can Make Anyone Crazy!”
Conclusion: Darknet Use Isn’t Always Bad
With titles like “2.7 Million People Use the Darknet Daily”, it’s easy to assume that cybercrimes are on the rise. However, it’s more clear that there are a larger abundance of users who are taking their privacy more seriously in a world that attempts to collect all your data and sells it to the highest bidder.
The Darknet has nefarious use cases, for sure. There is CP, violence, and slavery, but we can’t assume all users have malicious intent. If you want to really increase your personal security, I suggest checking out our OpSec guide.
Hey there, I’m a dark web geek who’s been around for the last 8 years. More precisely, I’m livedarknet’s senior content writer who’s been writing about darknet marketplaces, tutorials, and cybersecurity stuff for educational purposes.