How To: Avoid Being “Tracked 100% of The Time” When Using P2P and Bittorent (Noob Friendly)

12 10 2007

According to researchers at UC Riverside, “use a blocklist or you will be tracked… 100% of the time“. That’s an awful statistic. It comes from an article found on Ars Technica, so you know its pretty darn reputable information. I recommend you read the whole article (already linked up there). However, here is a small excerpt:

Title: P2P researchers: use a blocklist or you will be tracked… 100% of the time
The old cliché “You’re not paranoid if they really are out to get you” turns out to apply quite nicely to the world of P2P file-sharing. A trio of intrepid researchers from the University of California-Riverside decided to see just how often a P2P user might be tracked by content owners. Their startling conclusion: “naive” users will exchange data with such “fake users” 100 percent of the time.

Sources: ARS TECHNICA via HACK THE PLANET rss

Basically, at the very least, you need to use a blocklist or you are gonna get ThomASS’d (aka sued). I can just imagine many users out there thinking, “What’s a blocklist? Where do I get one? How do I use it? OMG, OMFG, WTF DO I DO?”

CALM DOWN!!! JUST TAKE A DEEP BREATH, TMBBITW is here to help. And by help we mean, offer up some information. Below we will lay out some resources, links and downloads that, when used, will ease you worries.

Now, a blocklist in and of itself is simple, its a list. A list of IP addresses, and some IP ranges, that are known to be essentially bad. By “bad” we mean that those IP’s are people or machines that are either tracking what you are doing or passing data to you that you do not want. An application on your computer uses a blocklist to stop those IP’s from connecting to your computer. Are you getting that warm fuzzy feeling of being informed yet? Well, keep reading.

Here are the most basic blocklist/P2P safety resources:

  • P2PNet: The original daily p2p and digital news site. Always First!
  • Slyck: Great site to learn how to use P2P services safely.
  • PhoenixLabs: These guys have been creating blocklists since forever and they also run blocklist.org.
    • Created (Windows/Mac Only): Peerguardian (app that keeps your blocklists updated and integrates with your P2P app)
  • Blocklist Manager : A free utility to download, merge, sort, and export IP lists in a variety of formats.
  • Protowall: A free utility that blocks undesired connections, to and from your computer via blocklist.
  • Protowall Mods: Cleric’s Protowall Mods

Now you’re wondering what P2P or BitTorent clients should I use. See below:

  • Azureus: BT Client that can update its own blocklists.
  • uTorrent: Small fast BT client with great traffic encryption.
  • BitCommet: BT app, written in C++, best for people behind a school firewall. Encrypts packet headers. This is for those that can not use port forwarding.
  • LimeWire: P2P app using the Gnutella network, that is great for small files. However you will need Peerguardian or Protowall, because it does not natively support any ipfilter or blocklist.
  • FrostWire: Based on LimeWire Pro, a free open source app that comes with some linux distributions. Still need Peerguardian or Protowall.

At the very least, those two lists above contain all you need. Something to go all P2P with, and a way to use a blocklist. You can use peerguardian and uTorrent, or Azureus and set up its IPfiltering option, or if you’re all Gnutella is good BT is hard… you can use FrostWire and peerguardian. As you can see there are lots of options.

For the sake of speed: You will probably need to open a port, via your firewall application or router software, in order for uTorrent or Azureas to let connections in using DHT (distributed hash tables, google it). This WILL speed everything up alot.

So you’re all done, you can go out and not ever be tracked, right? Well, sort of. You are pretty safe. However, there are some applications that you can use to actually try and mask your real IP address. Its an extra measure of security instead of just keeping the bad IPs out. These are the best, free, anonymity apps out there:

  • TOR: The Onion Router – Can help to hide your IP.
  • Privoxy: Helps to secure TOR even more.
  • Putty: Telnet/SSH client that can be used to secure your traffic going out to a Tor node.
    • NOTE: Using Putty and Tor together is a pretty complicated process, so you may want to skip this. If you’re up to it, read this tutorial.
    • Thanks to dBlackshell here are two more links on proxies from InsaneSecurity: one and two
  • JAP: Java based anonymity app. Some like it better than TOR some don’t.

In order for the above applications to work, you need to configure your P2P or BT client to connect to the internet THROUGH them. Tor has great instructions for this on their site. You can also configure your browser to go through those anonymity apps. The big drawback here is loss of speed. Any proxy based application will slow down your internets. Its a trade off that’s totally up to you.

You MUST know by now that you will eventually need more information, but you are afraid. Why? Because search engines like google and yahoo keep tabs on what you are searching for. For anonymous searching use:

As one can see, there are alot of resources out there to TRY and make your P2P life safe from being tracked. However, as with anything you do on the net, you will never be 100% anonymous. Its like having sex, sure there’s no 100% effective safe sex, but a condom is damn close enough to let you go at it. Just remember to keep your lists updated as well as your software. Now go be safe.

Got questions? Post them in the comments. (Note: This needs some Major editing, cause it was late and I got too tired to finish polishing it up)

*TMBBITW does not condone or support illegal file sharing in any form. In fact, TMBBITW and its writers promote, and fully support, Free Open Source Software, legal DRM-free music, Open Music and all sorts of nice legal things. Things that keep programmers employed and running your internets and creating games and all that good stuff.

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9 responses

15 10 2007
news4vip

Fanatics of the P2P super power gave birth to the devil.
It is the strongest P2P file sharing system Share NT.
And, Because UDP is used, even the band limiting that the internet service provider does is exceeded.

Reference
Share (P2P) – Wikipedia
Share NT – 2ch.ru

2 02 2008
25 02 2009
kampanye damai pemilu Indonesia 2009

nice post, Thank for this reference

5 10 2010
Gill Bates

wow this is cool!

29 11 2010
Evilbetty

Wait! Your forgetting one VERY important tool, its called OpenVPN.
Its the easiest encrypted network to set up and is free!
I havent had much luck with it personally but thats because im a noob :)

28 02 2011
Steve

I have heard of openVPN great app !!! But this isnt something for rookie/nob neither for advanced/experienced user !!! Why ??? You must have a very strong knowledge of network and all around it !!! That is only for pro that know what they doing ergo must be all setup done by the hand/individualy – nothing like 1 or few clicks with mouse for all others app in win !!!

15 06 2011
Anthony

You got that right Steve, I’m sick of seeing my ISP knowing what i download and getting hell from my ISP about things “THEY” don’t like that i download..you could say it’s on…….ON the border of sharing file your Not supposed to. I own the stuff i payed for and over the last lets say 10 YEARS! it shouldn’t be illegal what i share. I of course won’t share the files that can or will get me in hug donkey dropping… to say the least lol. Anyways I been looking for those openVPN’s to use and I download many of them ( i got 10 of them that i downloaded but one 1 is free installed on my pc), enough to learn a thing or to only to find out ALL of them even the most simple programs are for the PRO’s and none for us newbie. I’ve spent hour upon hour figuring out how to use them without success. Either i have gotten very close to getting it right or made unresolved progress at getting it all wrong. We newbies and we’re many, need a program that we can use like Vuze that only requires maybe some copy and paste or mostly click here and there with added follow up instructions/direction to you setting these openVPN clients. Lets get real We ALL need our online privacy NOT just for the PRO’s.

4 07 2011
Skzdcczf

cartier charm bracelet,

2 10 2012
Peter

Thanks for the warning. I was just going to download openvpn, released on 2012.09.14. http://www.peerblock.com/releases/public-releases/peerblock-1.1.0-r518.

I’m going nuts. I just got a threatening letter from some lawyer for three different cable stations, knowing what I downloaded, my port, isp, and the cable company, (demanding I explain myself and or stop it.) So I’ve been searching for hours. 1. Vuze, blocked peers, checked Onion router, and clicked random port no.’s. 2. Downloaded ( PeerBlock 1.0 (r181).

I’m on disability. I don’t have a TV. If I lose my service I have no contact with the outside world.

Do you know if the openvpn’s recent 9/12 is any easier?
How do I encrypt? Is it necessary with all I’ve done?

Question for the Copyright holders.

When I buy a DVD, or record a TV show, and give it to someone to watch; is that infringement? NO
That person gives it to another; infringement; NO, and so on and so on.
If I publicly display it; or make money off of it, the answer is yes.
We need to return to this old VCR warning. NOT FOR PUBLIC VIEWING.
It was never a problem when I lent, shared, or otherwise, donated a VCR tape.
Why is this a problem in virtual lending, sharing, and viewing?

What should I do about this lengthy, lengthy, charge of infringement from Osama Hussain, esq., (not kidding, and I know from experience that the E in esq., should be in upper case) representing H*O, *’z, and N BE SEE.

Lastly, the providers request is as follows: If you believe the enclosed DMCA notices were sent to CenturyLink in error, you may contact the copyright owner directly within the next five (5) days and email a copy of your correspondence to CenturyLink at abuse[at]centurylinkservices.net.
CenturyLink will give consideration to this challenge in enforcing its AUP.
If you choose not to challenge the notices, we will assume for purposes of
enforcing our AUP that they were not sent in error.

Copies of the DMCA notifications CenturyLink has received are as follows:

Too much for this query. I really need to know if this is BS! Please pardon the vernacular.
Thanks again.

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