Text Steganography: The Deep Web in Plain Sight
Youssef Bassil, Chief Science Officer of the Lebanese Association for Computational Sciences (LACSC), Beirut, Lebanon.
Manuscript received on November 12, 2018. | Revised Version Manuscript Received on November 18, 2018. | Manuscript published on November 20, 2018. | PP: 7-12 | Volume-5 Issue-2, December 2018. | Retrieval Number: B0864125218 /19©BEIESP
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© The Authors. Published By: Blue Eyes Intelligence Engineering and Sciences Publication (BEIESP). This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/)
Abstract: Essentially, the Deep Web also known as the Invisible Web is a hidden web whose content cannot be found by search engines and thus is inaccessible using conventional means. With the rise of activism, many has started using the Deep Web as a way to bypass regulations in order to distribute their ideologies while keeping their identity totally in secret. Tor short for The Onion Router is a Deep Web network that has been for many years used by many people from whistleblowers to cyber criminals to disguise their identities. However, as the Tor network is free and open to public, its inner workings and protocols can be seamlessly reverse-engineered. As a result, security experts were able to restrict the Tor traffic and block its network ports and IPs, making it prone to constant investigation by intelligence, security bodies, and law enforcement agencies. This paper proposes a novel method for implementing the Deep Web on the public Internet using Text Steganography. In short, the proposed method hides a secret page into another benign page called the carrier page using Cascading Style Sheets. When the carrier page is accessed using a regular browser, the benign page is rendered. Nonetheless, when the very same carrier page is accessed using a proprietary browser that implements the proposed algorithm, the hidden version of the page is rendered, mainly the secret web page that was originally concealed into the carrier page. The experiments conducted showed that the proposed method is plausible, seamless, and transparent as it allowed a single web page to exhibit two versions, one that is part of the Surface Web and another one that is part of the Deep Web. As future work, the proposed Text Steganography algorithm can be improved so much so to make it more robust and harder to reverse engineer
Keywords: Deep Web, Search Engine, Text Steganography, Tor