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What is the Invisible Web?
• The Visible Web
à The Web pages retrieved as a result of search engine
queries or use of a Web directory are called the visible
Web. They are readily accessible to anyone conducting
an Internet search.
• The Invisible Web
à Composed of online multimedia that cannot be detected
or indexed by search engines or directory spiders.
à Additional tools such as specialized directories or
portals are needed to access Invisible Websites.
à Darknet or Invisible websites use the extension “.onion”
What is the Invisible Web?
• Examples of Invisible Web Content:
• Data that needs to be accessed by a search interface
• Results of database queries
• Subscription-only information and other passwordprotected data
• Pages that are not linked to by any other page
• Technically limited content, such as that requiring
• Text content that exists outside of conventional http://
or https:// protocols
VISIBLE vs. INVISIBLE Web
“Typing “Google.co.uk” into your web
browser will take you to Google’s British
search engine, however, for a search engine
on the Darknet such as TORCH Search
Engine, you cannot type in “TORCH.co.uk”
because the website is hidden from view. In
order to go to TORCH you would have to
know the URL, the URL for TORCH is
Impact of the Invisible Web on ECommerce
on COMPETITIVE Intelligence:
à Access to structured data: our research shows that over 70% of the
data needed for competitive analysis is kept in structured databases
such as the ones listed above. It is therefore crucial to know how to
tap into those sources.
à Ability to listen to weak signals: for those tracking weak signals, or
new technologies, it is important to understand that a generic search
engine will not return many relevant results. Drop Google and dive
into the Invisible Web.
This simply means that the invisible web can aid the
E-Commerce industry in gaining sources to improve its
competitive edge towards competitors of all sorts.
Impact of the Invisible Web on
The INVISIBLE Web can be a POWERFUL tool for the
à Provide the industry with much needed information.
à Search for the UNSEARCHABLE
But when placed on the wrong hands in can also be a
DESTRUCTIVE tool for the E-Commerce Industry.
à Archives of files that must not be retrieved, such as business details
or transactions can be put some businesses in deep jeopardy.
à SECURITY and SAFETY of businesses belonging to the e-commerce
industry. An industry that is very digitalized and mobilized.
The Future of the Invisible Web
• Emergence of NEW Search engines for the use of the
public. And will continue to try to keep up with the
• Google will still be number ONE. BUT, there will still be an
indexed part of Google that will be invisible.
• GROWTH in the network of the invisible web. – Harder to
detect but will contain valued information, most especially
for research purposes.
• There will still be individuals or groups that will try to
unravel the secrets behind the invisible web and what
other valid information can be taken from these sites.