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Internet Searches:  Not Private? (Read 37870 times)
Pleonasm
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Re: Internet Searches:  Not Private?
Reply #15 - Feb 3rd, 2006 at 9:54am
 
NightOwl, concerning the Rad forum, I've never officially "signed-up" because I didn't see any reason for so doing.  Are there "benefits" of being a forum member about which I am unaware?  (Can I retroactively earn five stars?)  From my own perspective, being a guest on the forum is just a simply way to avoid a login process.  (Yes, perhaps I am guilty of being a bit 'lazy' on this point.)

Total Net Shield, however, doesn't prohibit the user from using websites that require a login.  The tool runs transparently in the background, and your Internet experience appears the same as it always has been – i.e., you can do what you have always done in the way you are accustomed to doing it.  Total Net Shield doesn't filter content or suppress URLs, unlike the security and parental control features of Norton Internet Security 2006, for example.

If you establish an account on a website and then subsequently login, you are – of course – voluntarily relinquishing your confidentiality.  Even in that case, however, Total Net Shield still provides value in so far as it prevents the website from knowing your IP address, your ISP, and your general geographic locale; plus, the content of your transmissions is cloaked to your ISP (because all traffic is encrypted to/from the PC).

One possible caveat:  I would anticipate that any website that authenticates you by IP address (e.g., domain name) would fail when using Total Net Shield.  Usually such websites offer an option, however, to manually login by entering a user name and password as well, and so the problem could be circumvented.  Alternatively, Total Net Shield can be temporarily disabled by right-clicking the icon in the System Tray and selecting "Switch to Insecure Mode."

* * * * * * * * * *

To further elaborate upon the telephone analogy, "Bob" regularly changes his outbound telephone number so that "Charles" would have a difficult time knowing who is "calling."  Correspondingly, Anonymizer changes the IP address of its proxy server no less frequently than once per day, so that any website attempting to block traffic arising from Anonymizer will be hindered.

P.S.:  The content that I have posed in this thread is based upon publicly available information on the Anonymizer website (www.Anonymizer.com), conversations with the company's technical support personnel, and my own usage of Total Net Shield.  Anyone wishing to confirm or probe these issues can call Anonymizer directly at 888-270-0141 (or 858-866-1300).
 
 
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Re: Internet Searches:  Not Private?
Reply #16 - Feb 3rd, 2006 at 11:58am
 
Quote:
I've never officially "signed-up" because I didn't see any reason for so doing.  Are there "benefits" of being a forum member about which I am unaware?  (Can I retroactively earn five stars?)  From my own perspective, being a guest on the forum is just a simply way to avoid a login process.  


Pleo, I enjoy reading your always enlightened posts.  You seem to have a knack for finding new obscure (yet relevent) topics!

First, you don't have to re-logon each time.  There is an option to stayed logged in permanently unless you click the "Logout" button at top of screen.

The two main benefits that I enjoy are

1) getting an email notice when someone has replied to a topic I posted to.  That is a nice alert so I don't have to keep checking to see myself.

2) When you look at for example Low Rad Board, there is a small "new" icon to the left of any topic that contains a post which you have NOT read.  This is regardless of whether or not you have asked to be noticed of postings.  This is VERY handy because if I have been gone for awhile, I can instantly see which threads/topics have new postings that I haven't read.  

If you're not signed in, you don't get to see those "new" icons.

John
 

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Re: Internet Searches:  Not Private?
Reply #17 - Feb 3rd, 2006 at 7:42pm
 
Pleonasm, I forgot to mention:

3) You have the option in your Profile to NOT make your email address visible.  (for those concerned about Anonymizer etc)
 

Ghost4me  Ghost 9, 10, 12, 14, 15.  Windows XP, Vista, Windows 7
 
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Brian
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Re: Internet Searches:  Not Private?
Reply #18 - Feb 5th, 2006 at 5:39pm
 
Pleonasm wrote on Feb 3rd, 2006 at 9:54am:
I've never officially "signed-up" because I didn't see any reason for so doing.  Are there "benefits" of being a forum member about which I am unaware? 


Perhaps not for you Pleo, but certainly for other members if 'you' were signed up. The "Search" function is a prime example. I can choose a member, show all of his (her) posts on one web page and search that page for words or phrases. I do it relatively frequently. The link I posted today on partitions (written by Dan) was found using the Search function. I can't search your posts because you aren't a member. At times my brain says, "Pleo has written about this", but I'm unable to find the post.

I'm serious Pleo. It would help me if you were a member.
 
 
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Re: Internet Searches:  Not Private?
Reply #19 - Feb 5th, 2006 at 11:23pm
 
Brian wrote on Feb 5th, 2006 at 5:39pm:
"... I'm serious Pleo.  It would help me if you were a member..."

I concur.  Moreover, I would advocate that you be appointed a
Moderator
in short order.

EP
Cry
 

...
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Re: Internet Searches:  Not Private?
Reply #20 - Feb 7th, 2006 at 2:18pm
 
It is worth noting that Total Net Shield provides several security advantages in addition to its primary confidentiality and privacy benefits:

Pharming - Quote:
Pharming . . . redirects Internet users from legitimate Web sites to malicious ones using a strategy called DNS cache poisoning.  The "Pharmer" inconspicuously hijacks your computer takes you to a copycat Web site.  The site it takes you to is most commonly a page that looks identical to that of your bank or financial institution.  From this point, they ask you to submit your vital passwords and financial information which go straight into their databanks. . . . Anonymizer's online identity protections solutions protect users against pharming attacks by routing all customer Internet traffic through the Company's protected DNS servers

Evil Twin Attack - Quote:
Evil twins trick wireless users into connecting a laptop or PDA to a tainted hotspot by posing as a legitimate wi-fi provider at the airport or your local coffee shop.  Once you connect to their wireless network, the evil twins can watch your online activities and steal your confidential information.  Total Net Shield safeguards you from this threat by encrypting all of your online activities so the evil twins are unable to access your passwords, credit card numbers, and other personal information.

Man-In-The-Middle Attack - Quote:
MITM attackers are able to read, insert, and modify online communications between two parties without either one knowing that their communications had been compromised.  Total Net Shield protects you from this attack by encrypting all of your online communications with SSH tunneling.

Source:  www.Anonymizer.com

* * * * * * * * * *

Ghost4me, Brian and El_Pescador:  Thank you all for the kind comments.  I have registered, and so now am an ‘official’ member of the forum.  Unfortunately, I’m classified as a “Rad Noob”!  (What's that?)  Maybe Rad will look kindly upon me and upgrade my status to “Official Rad Warrior”?
 

ple • o • nasm n. “The use of more words than are required to express an idea”
 
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Re: Internet Searches:  Not Private?
Reply #21 - Feb 7th, 2006 at 4:33pm
 
Pleonasm wrote on Feb 7th, 2006 at 2:18pm:
Maybe Rad will look kindly upon me and upgrade my status to “Official Rad Warrior”?


And so he should.
 
 
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Re: Internet Searches:  Not Private?
Reply #22 - Feb 15th, 2006 at 9:33am
 
The current issue of TIME magazine (February 20, 2006) asks this question on its cover:  “Can We Trust Google With Our Secrets?”.

For those who access the internet anonymously, the question is of no concern.  For those who don’t, the question needs to be considered.
 

ple • o • nasm n. “The use of more words than are required to express an idea”
 
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Re: Internet Searches:  Not Private?
Reply #23 - Feb 15th, 2006 at 10:54am
 
UNsticky.
 
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Re: Internet Searches:  Not Private?
Reply #24 - Mar 14th, 2006 at 12:20pm
 
The Wall Street Journal is reporting that "Google, U.S. Set For Court Face-Off Over Search Data" (March 14, 2006):

Quote:
Justice Department lawyers will press their case against Google Inc. today by arguing in federal court that consumer privacy won't be violated by the release of millions of company search records.

"Consumer privacy won't be violated by the release of millions of company search records"?  Is this an attempt at humor?
 

ple • o • nasm n. “The use of more words than are required to express an idea”
 
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Re: Internet Searches:  Not Private?
Reply #25 - Mar 15th, 2006 at 1:04pm
 
See the paper Timing Attacks on Web Privacy for a description of how your Internet privacy might be compromised through a very clever analysis of the time it takes load webpages.  The bottom line is this:  disable the Internet cache in your browser to circumvent this threat.
 

ple • o • nasm n. “The use of more words than are required to express an idea”
 
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Re: Internet Searches:  Not Private?
Reply #26 - Apr 17th, 2006 at 11:39am
 
Anonymizer is now providing free anonymous Internet access for the denizens of China:

Quote:
Chinese Citizens Get Censor-Free Internet Through Anonymizer
Operation Anti-Censorship Now Unveiled for People of China

San Diego, Calif. - March 31, 2006 - Anonymizer Inc., the leader in online identity protection software and services, today announced the launch of Operation Anti-Censorship.  This new privacy software, created specifically for Chinese citizens, will enable safe access to the entire Internet by circumventing the Web filters put in place by the government.  In addition, the new solution protects users from detection, persecution, and retribution by shielding their personal identities and related information that the Chinese government is currently able to monitor.

Source:  http://www.anonymizer.com/consumer/media/press_releases/03312006.html

The long-term political impact of allowing the Chinese unfettered access to the Internet could be quite significant.  Anonymizer deserves accolades for its accomplishment.
 

ple • o • nasm n. “The use of more words than are required to express an idea”
 
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Re: Internet Searches:  Not Private?
Reply #27 - Apr 30th, 2006 at 4:59pm
 
Another privacy concern on the web is a cookie replacement system built by United Virtualities, "an Internet marketing company best known for introducing 'Persistent Identification Element' (PIE) technology to store information on user's computers that survives even if the user regularly deletes cookies.  PIE works by using a feature of the Macromedia Flash Player that allows remote sites to store data for future retrieval, namely, 'Local Shared Objects'" (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_Virtualities).

For instructions on how to circumvent this privacy concern, see:
 

ple • o • nasm n. “The use of more words than are required to express an idea”
 
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Re: Internet Searches:  Not Private?
Reply #28 - May 9th, 2006 at 9:34am
 
Here is a resource that may be of interest to readers of this thread:  Free Anonymous Surfing.
 

ple • o • nasm n. “The use of more words than are required to express an idea”
 
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Re: Internet Searches:  Not Private?
Reply #29 - Jun 2nd, 2006 at 10:02am
 
Threats to your Internet privacy continue to develop, as reported by the Wall Street Journal (June 2, 2006):

Quote:
The U.S. Justice Department is working on a proposal that could compel Internet service providers to retain customer use data for up to two years . . . .

The initiative is a priority for U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, who gave a speech in April outlining how prosecutors believe retention of email traffic and Internet usage data could aid criminal investigations . . . .

As a part of this process, Mr. Gonzales and FBI Chief Robert Mueller met privately last week with executives of several Internet companies, including Google Inc., Microsoft Corp., Time Warner Inc.'s AOL unit and Verizon Communications Inc.
 

ple • o • nasm n. “The use of more words than are required to express an idea”
 
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