pirating shit PSA:

do not pirate shit without Tor or a VPN over your home internet connection or a monitored network (work, a public wifi with an email signin you didn't bullshit, etc)

for torrenting or streaming video content: use a VPN. They can monitor what you download but literally none of them give a shit because their business model relies on enabling piracy and bypassing region-locks.

for anything else Tor is probably okay and can't be traced back to you. just keep in mind that Tor bandwidth is a public resource and some people need Tor to browse, so you shouldn't waste it on stuff like seeding in P2P networks or inefficient downloads.


Tribler claims to be a bittorrent-based platform with its own Tor-like network that allows you to download anonymously. However it is not yet very mature and some users have reported getting ISP piracy notices anyways when using it.

I'll also add that i2p is a very very safe network for torrenting having similar benefits to Tor, except the network encourages that type of usage. It also requires much more IT knowledge to setup than Tor or a VPN. So if you can't afford a VPN and want to torrent something common it may be on an i2p torrent tracker (like postman), but be forewarned: i2p is even slower than Tor and i2p torrents are not the same as regular torrents, so if you are using i2p you can only torrent i2p torrents and not regular torrents which limits your selection.

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Example scenarios:

- Want to torrent something? Use a VPN, i2p, or maybe tribler
- Want to stream video from a sketchy place? Use a VPN.
- Want to download an ebook without getting caught? Use Tor or a VPN.
- Want to download a large collection of isos or roms? Use a VPN, tribler, or i2p.

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@thufie Are there free VPN services or are they all paid?

@LunaDragofelis there are and they are usually either honeypots (intentional traps for catching people) or for activist networks (riseup) and I wouldn't recommend using either for torrenting (don't steal bandwidth used for activist anonymity). Any super-cheap VPN is better.

@thufie I hope there is one that allows bank transfer payment because I neither have a credit card nor a paypal account

@LunaDragofelis @thufie check out mullvad

you can even pay them by sending them physical money via (irl)mail

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You have to have a trustworthy VPN provider though...

@dheadshot this is just for pirating shit, not hacking the gibson

Doesn't stop the VPN provider from ratting you out...

@thufie or just download everything via someone elses wifi by breaking in with aircrack-ng or like, buying a coffee and chilling in a starbucks for two hours. VPN's and TOR exit nodes are usually honey pots. Not like they're used for catching piracy tbh but it's just easier to go enjoy some warm espresso with my stolen shit


In centerfold-style:








(in fine print: without a Tor or VPN over your home internet connection or a monitored network...)

@SunSaint to avoid your ISP getting pissed off (in most areas ISPs give you a finite number of warnings and then they cut off your service altogether)

@thufie what about if you live in Canada where legal precedent suggests they won't go after you?

@zx go wild :)
(but check the email you gave to your ISP just in case)


Please FFS, don't use Tor for that kind of bullshit use.

Some people seriously rely on Tor to stay alive in their country or so. The network is pretty slow compared to the "normal" one. If everybody start to torrent/etc. in Tor, it'll become unusable.

Tor endpoints are often aimed to DDOS attacks (we host one at Aquilenet), it's really a critical thing.

So please, do not advice people to use Tor for anything unrelated to their own life safety/security, just please. It would be better to not even mention it's exist when it comes to download.

Thank you :-)
I read it but get triggered before the end

I saw you said to not use it but in first line you advice it and was like: "wat? meh" ^^'

@thufie or just... don't steal other people's work?

@tw @thufie it's one thing to be a dick to indie artists, it's another to take shit from companies that give zero fucks about the creators they hired and aren't giving a cut of the actual product sales

@thufie my understanding is that bittorrent doesn't work through a VPN? like it won't actually go through the proxy. has this changed?

@quarky if your entire system is going through a VPN connection then it will as well. It has never been automatic (unless there is a badass bittorrent client I don't know about). This has always been the case.

@thufie @quarky i followed my vpn's guide on how to set qbittorrent to only connect through the vpn's network interface, and what settings to disable to prevent leaking

@thufie IANAL but in most jurisdictions you aren't committing a crime by downloading shit. the reason why bittorrent can be problematic in certain countries is because you're also seeding.

use VPN if you can trust them, but it is not always necessary. ask your local hackers.

@thufie ok, but with all these VPNs, which ones are presently legit, not based in DMCA nation-states, and don’t run an arm and a leg to subscribe to

@patience that is a verrrry difficult question to answer but imo that doesn't matter 70% of the time because if these companies cut off bittorrent traffic they'd lose a ton of business.

If you are super serious about it, well you'd have to find a VPN service HQ'd outside the fourteen-eyes alliance that keeps no logs. The problem with that is there is literally no way to actually check if they are keeping logs. I'm sure some paranoid guys from 4chan's /g/ can give you a list of what they think is kosher and not, but in the end they are still relying on what is basically faith in a promise from a VPN operator.

@thufie i’m basically not very paranoid, but certainly interested in long-term. i’m familiar with the 14-eyes alliance, which was at the fore of my mind as i moved my web site away from bluehost and to a swiss hosting provider

here in canada, i looked into VPN services about three years ago for torrent stuff (then got overwhelmed by feature lists), but never went beyond that as ISPs here will, at most, notice-and-notice, mostly as courtesy, & don’t generally bother w/ releasing user data to DMCA claimants

@thufie I cam vouch for this. I work in information security. Because we're liable at my job if you pirate anything, we have automated alarms that go directly to security and legal if any of the following happen.

- We detect torrent protocol traffic.
- We detect FTP traffic to an external server.
- We detect traffic over a nonstandard port over 5000.
- We detect a connection to a known piracy server.
- We detect a full tunnel VPN connection to an unknown server.


- We detect heavy download followed immediately by heavy upload for significant lengths of time.
- We detect the download of a TOR browser, or Torrent client.

We *know*. Yes, this generates false positives. Yes, it takes time to sift through all the false positives.

This is how badly we get fined. Especially as a nonprofit organization.


@thufie (3/2 sorry)

We the security people who get these alarms do not give a *flying actual ding dong fuck* what you're downloading.

We have to act like we do.

@thufie maybe we should just bring back copy parties? :thinknyan:

@thufie I want to point out that torrents don't work over Tor! The whole point of torrents is direct connection. You out yourself super easily and just waste bandwidth.

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