Cyber criminals have always been masters in flying under the radar. This is one common trait which all hackers in the ascended race inherit somehow. But have you ever wondered how these cyber crooks manage to meet online—not to forget the security constraints. How do you think they communicate and strategize their operations? During midnight long down the alley lane or in a private apartment (just how we have been seeing around in movies). But actually it’s nothing like that—it’s far ahead of our fantasies!
A lot of times, they meet through online on forum sites or blogs, chatrooms, and such. Often they use Dark/Deep Web programs like Tor to communicate without an IP Address or tracking. Within programs like Tor are many websites of various categories from drug trafficking, weapons trafficking, and chat rooms.
For those who are not aware, let’s discuss about these anonymous platforms of hacker dealings in detail.
Until this year, the internet privacy tool Tor was scarcely heard of outside the tech community. But What exactly does Tor do? If we talk in most simplified term, TOR (The Onion Router) is the easiest way to browse the web anonymously. It is designed to stop people – including government agencies and corporations – learning your location or tracking your browsing habits. This is majorly used by hackers worldwide, making it extremely hard for anyone to identify the source of the information or the location of the user.
Nowadays, the vast majority of online crime trade happens in the Dark Web, i.e. on sites hosted on Tor Hidden Service. It’s very hard to track down the operator of a Tor Hidden Service site. I believe it has been only twice so far.
See Also: Cyber Security: The Painful Truth
Hence, Tor is one of the easiest ways to anonymize your traffic, and it’s free. It’s far from perfect, though!
IRC aka Internet Chat Relay
This is another effective platform used by hackers as a private communication channel. Internet Relay Chat is a method to broadcast and receive live, synchronous, messages. There are hundreds of IRC channels (discussion areas) around the world, hosted on servers, on which people type their messages to others on the same channel interested in the same subject.
Internet Relay Chat is just like your instant messengers, but is devoid of spam or general security risks that other IM services not only allow but are built to accept.
Online forums are quiet critical to the hacking community. To most of us Hackers are often perceived as isolated alienated individuals. However, in reality, hackers are quite social. They are often seen frequenting online forums and chat rooms to brag about their exploits. The underground forums provide ways for the community to communicate and collaborate with each other, recruit new talent as well as buy and sell stolen data and tools.
Maintaining online privacy in this digital world is very important to a lot of Internet users these days. If you have more wisdom to add don’t hesitate to share with us in the comments section below. We’d love to hear from you!