The best (LEGAL) .onion Sites & how to access them in 2019

Last Updated by Gray Williams on October 23, 2018

If you’ve visited the dark web you know it can feel like a never-ending showcase of cool sites. If you have never visited the dark web, we’ve put together this list of the best .onion sites available, and how you can browse them safely. For more information, you can find a complete guide to the dark web here.

Most sites within the dark web are intentionally difficult to find, and URLs aren’t descriptive or indicative of their content. Consequently, not knowing where to look means you will miss interesting or important content.

Knowing where to look is half the battle, while the other half is staying safe. Government entities, while not being able to track your activity on the dark web, can know that you visit them, and, according to the United States Supreme Court, simply accessing the dark web confers law enforcement the right to search your computer.

Therefore, accessing the dark web demands keeping your identity protected even if your intentions are entirely innocent. To protect your privacy, we recommend that in addition to using the Tor browser for anonymity, you also use a highly encrypted VPN so you can remain invisible.

Knowledge

1. Sci-Hub –Gaining access to scientific research papers can be difficult or expensive. Organizations require high membership fees or high one-time fees for access. Sci-Hub offers millions of scientific papers and articles to readers for free.

2. Library GenesisLibrary Genesis has vast collections of books on topics such as technology, business, computers, and science. The site also boasts large collections of comics, fiction, and magazines. The site reports that its holdings have reached 2 million files, and if you would like to discuss it with other members, there is an active forum section.

Search Engines

3. DuckDuckGoTor makes it difficult to browse the dark web with constant CAPTCHA prompts. DuckDuckGo is easy to use and has other benefits. DuckDuckGo won’t log any of your search history, blocks advertising trackers, keeping your search history private, and allows you to take control of your personal data. In addition, DuckDuckGo still manages to pump out decent search results.

4. Uncensored Hidden Wiki – The uncensored version of Hidden Wiki indexes links for almost anything there is on the dark web. Unfortunately, the problem with the Uncensored Hidden Wiki is that links don’t always work the way they should and many of them can lead to scam websites. Caution advised.

5. Torch Search Engine – yet another search engine that works well for users searching for .onion links. The search engine furnishes users with additional information like the size of the page in question.

Cryptocurrencies

6. Blockchain for Bitcoinbills itself as the most popular Bitcoin wallet and is available at a .onion address. Tor offers Bitcoin users an added level of protection and anonymity. As a side note, Blockchain.com is one of the few sites with HTTPS certification for its .onion address.

7. Easy Coins – this website functions as a Bitcoin wallet and mixer, which can become necessary when you aren’t sure that all your Bitcoins are clean. Easy Coins does not charge a fee for the mixing services, but it does charge a Bitcoin transaction fee, which is normal.

Political Sites

8. The Intercept – since its inception, the Intercept’s mission has been to push fearless, adversarial journalism. The website prides itself on giving journalists not only the editorial freedom they need, but the legal support to pursue investigations into corruption and other injustices. Their .onion address allows journalists to offer whistleblowers more anonymity and safety. Its Safe Drop facility allows users to submit documents without having their identities revealed.

9. Secure Drop – Secure Drop has earned a reputation as a whistleblowing platform for those with reservations about sharing sensitive information. The website allows you to share your information with the media without revealing your identity. Secure Drop makes it easy for both members of the public and the media to download information as they wish. Submitting your information automatically encrypts it, and they don’t log your IP address, allowing them plausible deniability of your identity.

Market Places

10. Dream Market – Considered the second largest marketplace on the deep web, Dream Market also has the distinction of being one of the few trusted ones. Visitors can find a variety of products and services for sale on the website. These include drugs, hosting, electronics, software, and gadgets.

11. Valhalla Market – Valhalla has also earned a reputation as one of the most popular and trusted marketplaces on the deep web. Valhalla has one of the most comprehensive lists of product and services available. Apart from their offerings, Valhalla is a favorite of visitors for features like its secure codebase, mandatory PGP verification and multisig payments that keep your Bitcoins protected.

12. WallStreet Market – You can’t talk about dark web marketplaces without talking about WallStreet Market. With 250K customers and over 2,200 vendors, it’s one of the best dark web markets. WallStreet Market boasts an extensive list of products and services and has a solid reputation.

Email Services

13. ProtonMailone of the best and most popular email services on the dark web, ProtonMail prides itself on keeping users anonymous while giving them access to quality email services. Unlike Mail to Tor (offline since 2013), if you lose your login information, ProtonMail has an automated login recovery system.

14. Guerilla Temporary Mails – different from any type of email service, Guerilla allows you to create a temporary email address. These types of email addresses are well-suited for temporary deals. You can choose from a number of domains, no registration is required, and the email address is functional for 60 minutes.

Safety

While the dark web promises its users anonymity, you shouldn’t rely on it for your privacy. Instead, you should use a VPN to keep you and your information safe as you browse. The best for keeping you safe online are NordVPN, CyberGhost VPN  and ExpressVPN, each one provides users with:

  • High encryption standards – Keeps your IP address hidden
  • No log policy – don’t keep records of your activity
  • DNS leak protection – ensures that no DNS request is sent straight to your internet service provider
  • Automatic Kill Switch – Should your VPN connection stop unexpectedly, your identity won’t leak

The dark web can be a dangerous place for visitors. VPNs offer users so much protection, it would be unwise to visit the dark web without one. By all means, enjoy the dark web and what it offers, but remember to stay safe while doing so.

Gray Williams
Gray Williams is an experienced data and communications engineer and cross-platform copy and content writer and editor with a keen interest in cybersecurity. He has been working with and researching, VPNs and other online privacy tools for many years.