Surf the Web anonymously Video
Surf the Web anonymously Video Transcript
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>> The internet can be a scary place, with all kinds of bad guys, and good guys trying to spy on what information you're sending through the tubes. Even if you have nothing to hide, maybe the thought of folks snooping on you makes your skin crawl. I'm Tom Merritt from cnet.com. I'll show you a couple of ways to surf anonymously on today's Insider Secret. [ music ] ^M00:00:31 For the basic web surfing there are free services coming and going all the time that allow you to avoid cookies and other tracking, while using your regular old web browser. Good place to keep track of your options is thefreecountry.com. However, if you want a more reliable and tested anonymity network, may I suggest The Onion Router, aka TOR. TOR was created by the U.S. Office of Naval Research to get around sensorware in countries like China. And then the EFF took it over and ran it through a few years, and it is now run by the TOR project, a non-profit organization. Here's a simple view of how it works. When you run TOR, your internet requests are sent through a series of computers that pass along the request. Now the computers don't know where that request originated, and the request itself is encrypted. It only emerges in the clear when it reaches the destination server. So let's take an onion. I initiate an encrypted request that gets sent to this layer, which then gets sent to this layer. But the layers only know the last layer they got it from, they can't trace it back to the source, see? Hence, the name The Onion Router. It's very easy for you to use TOR on your end. Go to torproject.org and download the right software bundle for your computer. You get a few pieces of software in addition to TOR. The Dalia [assumed spelling] is a graphical user interface, it starts relaying traffic through TOR, and allows you to manage how TOR works for you. There's also something called Privoxy [assumed spelling] that I'll get to in a minute. First though, you have to configure the different programs you use to take advantage of TOR. Read the guide or visit the TOR wiki to learn how to configure specific apps. I'll show you how to set up Firefox as an example. Now my version of The Dalia here automatically installed TOR button in Firefox, and configured it. If yours didn't for some reason, go to addons.mozilla.org and find TOR button. Once Firefox is up and running, go click on the words TOR disabled. They should become TOR enabled. Now your web traffic is securely running through TOR. The final pieces of the software installed with The Dalia is the one I mentioned earlier, Privoxy. This is a filtering proxy server that adds additional security at the application layer. Privoxy hides your true location, you appear to be surfing from somewhere you're not. Cool, sort of. Some sites auto detect your location, and with Privoxy running, sometimes they get it wrong. Google may force you to use another country's search engine for instance, and network television video may complain that you're out of the country, and refuse to stream you your shows. Now if you don't want the added protection of Privoxy, you can turn off the proxy settings in Firefox. Go to preferences, advanced, settings, and choose no proxy. That decreases your anonymity though, just remember that you have to have TOR enabled every time you browse, or what you're browsing is gonna be tracked. Also keep in mind some security researchers have found some possible vulnerabilities in TOR. Nothing's a 100%, but The Dalia interface with Privoxy and the Firefox plug in greatly increases your anonymity. And we've only touched the epidermis of what TOR can do. If you want to learn more, start a TOR project out, or you can even volunteer. [ background music ] That's it for this edition of Insider Secrets. I'm Tom Merritt, cnet.com. ^M00:03:44 [ music ]
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