It is known how important it is to hide internet traffic from prying eyes, whether the government, internet service provider or advertising agencies and internet giants. They can find out anything about us, from what we eat for breakfast to our health status. Especially if you browse the internet when you are logged into services such as Google. Lots of people freely publish a lot of information on subjects related to their personal lives, (e.g. in social media), but there are also people who may not have an account on Facebook or Instagram because they have nothing to share or simply do not want to be part of this machine. Everyday browsing the Internet can be quite comfortable and safe without fear that data about us is stored somewhere in the server rooms of powerful or small companies and if it is already, slightly it is not real data.
It is also known that the TOR network is used for many purposes. Not only for browsing the web by a common simple user but also by journalists, activists whom want to hide real location and various types of criminals, that’s why this network and its servers have such and no other reputation. Well, the TOR network also needs to be skilfully used so as not to expose to the visit of morning guests with a request to give them a computer and or phone. Being directly connected to the TOR network, the police may be interested in us, only because we were connected to it at the same time as some third party person committing a crime.
There are several options to protect yourself against this.
- The first method is to establish a connection to the VPN server and only after establishing such – we launch, for example, the Tor Browser application. Only then we could browse the internet without fear of being temporarily correlated with some criminal act that we have not committed.
- A similar method can be used with the use of a virtual Whonix station, an anonymous operating system consisting of a router that passes all internet traffic from a dedicated virtual machine through the TOR network.
- There is also another solution – by using the Squid server. It is a server that stores, for example, pictures from the Internet in its cache, thanks to which using the TOR network with its help significantly speeds up the use of the internet browser. Of course, the cache can be turned off so that the server does not leave traces of its use as well as we can turn off logs and anonymize it by turning off the headers sent through it. Just like in the case of earlier options using the VPN tunnel, our device does not connect directly to the TOR network, but first from the Squid server and then anonymizes all traffic through the TOR network. As an additional layer of security, of course, we can add a VPN at the beginning of the Squid → Tor connection, so our scheme will be additionally encrypted.
In all three cases, we are protected against correlating us with the fact of using the TOR network, because in the ISP logs there is only a connection to the VPN server or a separate Squid server.