Sometimes I come across .onion links.

How can I know if the content inside is legal without actually going there first?


Hey everyone! Go to https://3g2upl4pq6kufc4m.onion/ to learn how to easily peel oranges!

How do I know that the URL is actually legal to visit?

(the URL above points to the DuckDuckGo search engine)

  • Safe in what context? Why wouldn't how you approach this for non-onion addresses be exactly the same as for onion adresses?
    – cacahuatl
    Commented May 19, 2017 at 11:25

1 Answer 1


You could simply try searching for the address on a search engine that indexes .onions which should give you an idea of what the site is about.

If that doesn't work:

Since your concern seems to be about downloading illegal images, you might want to simply block images from loading while visiting that site. This can be done in Firefox's about:config by setting the value of permissions.default.image to 2 (it doesn't seem to block all images, for example "icons" and some other content still loads).

This will make your browser stand out among other users who visited the site, but as long as you reset the setting to default for anything else you do on Tor, this shouldn't harm your anonymity.

You probably want to block video and sound as well. If you're concerned about some content still loading, find a way to actually make Firefox only load text.

Simply connecting to a site and/or downloading some text from it shouldn't be illegal (I am not a lawyer and I do not know your country), but you might want to check your jurisdiction.

  • 1
    "You probably want to block video and sound as well, which is automatically done by NoScript on Tor Browser's high security setting." <- this doesnt actually work, it can take NoScript longer to block video content that it takes for it to start playing.
    – cacahuatl
    Commented Jun 1, 2017 at 18:59
  • @canonizing ironize Tested this, you're right. Since the content must be prevented from downloading in the first place, seems like the only sure way to accomplish something like what OP wanted is to make Firefox text-only, and I don't know of any easy way to do that. Add-ons maybe, but they might break TBB's anonymity so I don't want to recommend any.
    – Anonymous
    Commented Jun 1, 2017 at 20:20

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