7 Pro Tips to Safely Download Torrents and Protect Your Identity

7 Pro Tips to Safely Download Torrents and Protect Your Identity

You may be aware that law enforcement agencies are continually clamping down on torrent sites and seeking users of the services to prosecute them. To avoid the risk of eyes prying on your data and online activities, here is a comprehensive list of tools you can use.

7 Pro Tips to Safely Download Torrents and Protect Your Identity

1. Use a seeder box


A seeder box is a remote server that seeds the torrent for you, storing it in your cloud account for the service. After that, you can download the file with your normal internet speeds or, in some cases, stream video or audio files through the service. An excellent example of such a service is ZbigZ and Seedr.cc. You don't need to download any software to your computer because ZbigZ fetches the torrent, without giving out your IP address.

ZbigZ downloads are exceedingly fast for torrents with low seeds. At this time, ZbigZ offers registered users (all you need is an email address) 1 GB cloud storage for free. ZbigZ's premium options are cheaper than most other alternatives, offering unlimited storage, with no cap on seeding speeds, and you can even sync files to your Google Drive. You can pay for the service with bitcoin to further increase your anonymity. Read more at Ergonotes.

2. Use a VPN


Virtual Private Networks or VPNs need no introduction, with them having a barrage of adverts on YouTube. In essence, a VPN hides your real IP address and encrypts your internet traffic. Doing so ensures your Internet service provider (ISP) or anyone else has no chance of seeing your traffic, and in this case, knows that you're even downloading a torrent.

The best VPNs are usually paid, with services hosted in countries with no torrenting regulation or extradition. Sure, there are good free options, but traffic is generally slower, or data through the VPN is limited to a certain amount of gigabytes per month.

3. Proxy server


Proxies hide your IP address by porting connection requests to other servers, just like a VPN. However, your ISP can still see that you're using torrent websites if using Proxies since data is not encrypted. Another problem with proxies is that they tend to be overcrowded, leaving you with little to no bandwidth in many cases.

4. Use Tor browser


Tor (The Onion Router) is an anonymization network created by the U.S. government to protect intelligence communications online. You can safely browse torrent sites using Tor and this is quite startling since the same government agencies are usually against the practice.

Despite the convenience tor offers, your ISP can recognize that you're using the relay network. Also, internet speeds on Tor are less, because of overloads on the network, resulting in even slower torrent downloads.

5. Use Anomos


Anomos is free cross-platform software based on BitTorrent that encrypts the P2P file-sharing protocol or torrents. Using it is quite intuitive, just like BitTorrent. File downloading speed is based on the number of seeds, similarly to other torrent clients. Traffic from peer to peer is encrypted, with Anomos "layering" data, making it even harder for your ISP to decrypt.

However, to make yourself genuinely anonymous when downloading torrents with Anomos, you need to tweak the connection settings to use traffic from the Tor network. The challenges of relaying traffic from Tor's network remain the same, giving you slower download speeds.

6. Proxy for torrent


Many companies are offering to download torrents for you, encrypt the file, all while hiding your identity. Ideally, proxies are situated in countries where piracy laws are not strict, and people can download and upload torrents as they wish. Proxies can also be individuals, but if caught, they might leak out your information. The downside to proxies is that they are not always reliable, and prices can vary greatly.

7. Use PeerBlock


PeerBlock is an open-source firewall that you can use to block a set of IP addresses from looking into your internet traffic when torrenting, the obvious addresses to block are government agencies and copyright groups- the update (or "fork") is done by peers on the service. However, PeerBlock does not encrypt internet data- so your ISP and other members of the service can still monitor your online activities. Also, updates aren't always reliable, since any organization can quickly and simply change their IP address.

Conclusion


Controversy courts torrents, with many people not knowing whether they are legal or not. Heck, even the powers that be probably don't know how to legislate the issue. In torrents, there are many clear advantages and disadvantages. This gray issue has most governments at loggerheads, but some still take the initiative to deal with people using torrents actively. Regardless, it's better to be safe than sorry.
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