Understanding the Impact of the Dark Web on Society: A Systematic Literature Review

Lizzy Oluwatoyin Ofusori, Rimuljo Hendradi

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


The dark web is considered an expansion of the deep web, intentionally hidden from the surface web. It can only be accessed with a particular group of browsers that allow the user to stay anonymous while navigating the dark web. With the untraceable hidden layer of the Internet and the anonymity of the users associated with the dark web, several impressive cybercrimes have been reported. This paper aims to examine the impact of the dark web on society. The article systematically reviews relevant academic literature and books to understand how the dark web works and its societal effects. The study has found that the dark web is an enabler of several cybercrimes. Moreover, while governments and regulatory authorities have introduced strategic detection techniques on the dark web, cybercriminals are adaptive towards the strategies and, given time, will usually find ways to bypass such detection techniques. It is recommended that the regulatory authorities and cyber threat intelligence periodically review the detection techniques for effective monitoring. Furthermore, security agencies or forensic analysts should ensure that they are updated with the latest scientific knowledge on the safe management of the dark web by undertaking more training in cyber security. There is also a need for further research to focus on awareness campaigns about the dangers of the dark web.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-21
Number of pages21
JournalInternational Journal of Information Science and Management
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2023
Externally publishedYes


  • Cybercrime
  • Dark Web
  • Internet
  • Society
  • Tor


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