What is the Surface Web - Dark Side of the Web

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Surface Web

The surface web is the part of the internet that is accessible through a standard web browser. The definition of the surface web means the web's content and functions, including websites, web applications, and online services. 

The surface web is sometimes referred to as the 'public' web. This is because most of the web is accessible to anyone with an internet connection. The surface web isn't a single place – instead, it's a collection of webpages, apps, and other digital experiences accessible through a web browser. 

The surface web includes everything from the websites and apps we use every day to the blogs and news articles we read on our phones and tablets. However, the definition of the surface web is not all that exists on the internet. 

The internet is made up of three different sections: the surface web, the dark web, and the deep web. In this blog, we'll explore the different layers of the web, the difference between the surface, dark and deep web sections of the internet, and the different sites under the surface web.

What are the Different Layers of the Web 

1. The Surface Web 

As we discussed the definition of the surface web in our previous blog - Deep Web vs. Dark Web: Key Differences - Surface web meaning can be extracted from the part of the internet that is accessible through a standard web browser like Google or Mozilla Firefox. 

The content under the surface web can be anything from websites to blogs, news articles to social media posts, and web applications to online services. 

Sites of the Surface Web

The surface web includes all the websites and apps as follows:

The surface web contains the content converse to the dark and deep web. Let's examine each of them separately. 

2. The Dark Web 

The definition of the surface web contrasts with the dark web. The dark web is a series of websites and other digital experiences inaccessible through a traditional web browser.

This means the dark web can only be accessed by using special software like Tor Browser, an anonymous browser that connects the world with hidden sections of the web like the Silk Road, The Hidden Wiki, and The Pirate Bay. 

These sites are banned from the surface web due to their content and illegal activities. Only an I2P or Tor browser can access these sites. 

3. The Deep Web 

The deep web is a part of the internet that is also inaccessible through standard web browsers. In contrast to the definition of the surface web, the deep web is made up of content that is kept on web pages and websites but has not been indexed by conventional internet search engines. 

By using standard web browsers, one cannot access the deep web. To access the deep web, a web crawler is used. Web crawlers are software programs that crawl websites and digital content on the deep web. 

They are programs that automatically navigate through websites and other digital content on the deep web and collect the information they find. Web crawlers can access websites, blogs, and other digital content on the deep web but cannot access the surface web. 

The deep web is often referred to as the dark web due to its inaccessible nature through traditional web browsers, and both terms are used interchangeably. However, they are not the same. Let's find out the difference between the surface, deep and dark web.

Different Layers of the Web

Surface vs. Deep vs. Dark 

The surface web meaning is quite simple. The surface web is accessible through a normal browser, while the dark and deep web are not. They require special software, like web crawlers or a Tor brokerage, to access their content. 

From the definition of the surface web, we know that it comes with a lot of features and capabilities. On the other hand, the dark and deep web connects you with the banned section of the web. Both the deep and the dark web shouldn't be accessed, as they are not safe. 

Enhance Your Software Testing with AppSierra 

Be it on the surface web or any other section of the internet, having the right tools and software to test your web applications is a must. AppSierra is a leading provider of software testing solutions that help you improve the quality of your software, minimize testing time and mitigate risk. 

AppSierra's cloud-based software testing services help businesses improve quality, increase productivity, and shorten delivery time by providing fully hosted testing solutions that are easy to use and affordable to run, scale, and control. 

From running multiple regression tests to testing mobile apps, AppSierra's suite of testing automation tools helps you get the job done in no time. The software testing services offered by AppSierra include: 

1. Quality Engineering 

2. Digital Assurance 

AppSierra offers budget-friendly pricing and flexible plans that allow you to choose the level of quality you need to achieve successful testing and minimize risk. With over 15+ years of industry experience and a track record of success of 1015+ test automation suites, AppSierra is the best choice for your software testing needs. 

Join the AppSierra revolution today and collaborate with the top 5% of the QA and Devs!


In this blog, we've discussed the basic definition of the surface web and its counterparts on the internet. We've also discussed the examples of the sites and services that fall under the category of the surface web.

In the end, we've also revealed the best-in-class software testing services AppSierra provides at the most affordable rates. So, if you're looking for the best software testing company for your business, then AppSierra is a perfect choice!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) 

Q1. What is the definition of the Surface Web with examples? 

The area of the World Wide Web that is easily accessible to the general public and searchable using common web search engines is known as the Surface Web. It is the opposite of the deep web, the area of the internet that a search engine has not been able to index. 

Examples: Facebook, YouTube, Wikipedia, regular blogging websites, etc. 

Q2. What purpose does Surface Web serve? 

Users access the Surface Web as part of their routine daily activities. It can be found using common search engines and accessed using common web browsers like Mozilla Firefox, Microsoft's Internet Explorer or Edge, and Google Chrome, which don't need any special configuration. 

Q3. What are the Three Different Layers of the Web? 

The web is divided into three sections: 

  1. The surface web or public web 
  2. The dark web 
  3. The deep web

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