How to anonymize and encrypt your bittorrent traffic

I’ve seen a few solutions, such as using a private proxy. One that comes to mind is a tutorial from Lifehacker on BTGuard. In my opinion, BTGuard should not exist when it is an easy feat to encrypt the initial connection, or use a completely different alternative. My reason for not liking BTGuard? It doesn’t even make you fully anonymous as it claims.

BTGuard acts like a proxy and simply anonymizes your traffic when connected through them. It’s a paid service, too, and who wants to pay seven dollars every month when they are downloading free programs like Linux and device drivers? Not only does the cost prove to be an issue, but when you initially connect to the network, you are doing so over an insecure connection! This means that your ISP can see you connecting to BTGuard, and after they see your bandwidth usage, can you honestly think they will believe you are using it for something other than torrenting? Sadly, for now, services like these are all we have.

A free alternative would be to use ItsHidden VPN service. It allows you to make an encrypted connection to them before downloading torrents, but in order to do that, you need to sign up for an account. You can follow a tutorial on how to connect to the VPN here. You can really use any VPN to download torrents, but it is a bit mean to the other VPN users for you to suck up all of the bandwidth, so please refrain from doing that.

Today’s Null Byte will demonstrate how to get ready for the future. Soon, torrents will be available in what is called an .atorrent file. These new breed of torrents support the Anomos protocol, which is used by the program of the same name. For now though, we can still convert normal torrents using Anomos and download from our other encrypted peers. This means that the more people who use it, the better!

  • ThePirateBay, the world largest BitTorrent tracker, has plans to offer .atorrent files as an optional download.
  • uTorrent, the largest BitTorrent client, has plans to integrate the Anomos protocol in future releases.

How to anonymize and encrypt your bittorrent traffic

Requirements

  • Any major OS (Mac OSX, Windows, GNU/Linux)

Installation & Configuration of Anomos Client

Anomos is basically the same, in principle, as the standard Bittorrent protocol. It secures your anonymity, because it uses an extra layer similar to Onion routing, with end-to-end encryption as well. In practice, this means that IP addresses are hidden and the data being passed is encrypted. To completely trump even BTGuards issues, you can connect to the tracker anonymously using Tor. Using Tor on Anomos forces the initial connection to be run through Tor, but the rest is done via the Anomos network to maintain speed and security.

Let’s check out how Anomos looks by downloading and installing it.

Downloads

Follow along with me in this vTutorial to install and set up Anomos to use Tor to connect to the Anomos network.

Instructions

  1. Click File > Settings.
  2. Go to Proxy address to use.
  3. Enter 127.0.0.1:8118 or 127.0.0.1:9050 into the field.
  4. Click File > Anonymize and open a .torrent file.

If you enjoy the tutorials from Null Byte, come to the IRC and chat amongst friends.

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More and more ISP’s are limiting and throttling BitTorrent traffic on their networks. By throttling BitTorrent traffic the speed of BitTorrent downloads decrease, and high speed downloads are out of the question.

The list of ISP’s that limit BitTorrent traffic, or plan to do so is growing every day, and according to the BBC, the ‘bandwidth war’ has begun.

Are you not sure if your traffic is being throttled Check the list of bad ISP’s.

But there is a solution. Encrypting your torrents will prevent throttling ISP’s from shaping your traffic. I will explain how to enable encryption in Azureus, uTorrent, and Bitcomet, the three most popular torrent clients.

What does encryption Do?

The RC4 encryption obfuscates not only the header but the entire stream. This means that it’s very hard for your ISP to detect that the traffic you are generating comes from BitTorrent.

Note that RC4 uses more CPU time than the plain encryption or no encryption. It is however harder to identify for traffic shaping devices

How can I do this?

This is different for all clients; check the setting for your favorite client below.

1. Go to: Tools > Options > Connection > Transport Encryption

2. Check the ‘require encrypted transport’ box.

3. Choose RC4 in the ‘minimum encryption’ dropdown box

note that RC4 uses more CPU time than the plain encryption or no encryption. It is however harder to identify for traffic shaping devices
4. You can choose to tick the ‘Allow non-encrypted outgoing connections if encrypted connection attempt fails’ box. This will ensure compatibility with clients that are not using encryption. However, it makes it easier for your ISP to detect BitTorrent traffic. I recommend that you try to tick this box first. If you are still not getting proper speeds untick it

5. Tick the ‘Allow non-encrypted incoming connections’ box

How to anonymize and encrypt your bittorrent traffic

That’s it, your BitTorrent traffic is encrypted now.

1. Go to: Options > Preferences > Advanced > Connection

2. Go to: ‘Protocol encryption’ You can choose between ‘auto detect’ and ‘always’. Auto detect will give you more connections but offers less protection against traffic shapers.

I would recommend to try auto detect first, if that doesn’t increase your speeds you need to switch to always

How to anonymize and encrypt your bittorrent traffic

That’s it, your BitTorrent traffic is encrypted now.

uTorrent

1. Go to: Options > Preferences > BitTorrent

2. Go to ‘Protocol encryption’, you can choose between ‘enabled’ and ‘forced’. ‘Enabled’ will give you more connections but offers less protection against traffic shapers.

I would recommend to try ‘enabled’ first, if that doesn’t increase your speeds you need to swich to ‘forced’.

3. Ticking ‘Allow legacy incoming connections’ allows non ecrypted clients to connect to you. This improves compatibility between clients but makes you more vulnerable to traffic shapers.

I would recommend to tick this box, but if that doesn’t increase your speeds, untick it!

How to anonymize and encrypt your bittorrent traffic

That’s it, your BitTorrent traffic is encrypted now.

Good luck and happy torrenting

Internet security for everyone

How to Completely Anonymize Your BitTorrent Traffic with BTGuard (Pay Service)

September 7, 2012 by SECURITY23

How to anonymize and encrypt your bittorrent trafficIf you’re using BitTorrent without taking special measures to hide your activity, it’s just a matter of time before your ISP throttles your connection, sends you an ominous letter, or worst case, your ISP gets a subpoena from a lawyer asking for your identity for a file-sharing law suit. Here’s how to set up a simple proxy to keep your torrenting safe and anonymous.

Heck, you don’t even need to be doing anything illegal, either. Maybe you just want to keep Big Brother out of your business and from throttling your connection. Either way, if you really want to keep your activity private, your best bet involves routing your BitTorrent connection through an external service.

BTGuard is a dead simple BT-focused proxy server and encryption service, and it’s my service of choice. Below, I’ll explain what it does, how it works, and how to set it up to privatize and anonymous your BT traffic.

The Torrents have become the largest platform for the sharing of files and enjoying the things which you will not get anywhere else. Bolly4u is a site for downloading movies, a site where you can get movies in any language easily. It can be accessed with the help of torrent sites. Despite the delicacies it offers, torrent sites are not safe for use.

For anonymizing your BitTorrent identity and hiding the activity there are many options but the proxy is the most convenient amongst all of them. As already said when you share a file on the torrents, you along with other swarms are been monitored by some people and the Piracy monitoring group.

The proxy fools the piracy monitoring groups. It funnels the BitTorrent traffic through a different server, the BitTorrent swarm then shows up a different IP address. This saves you from been caught and the anti-piracy groups are not able to contact your ISP. There is no more fear to you of getting a letter of service denial from ISP.

How to anonymize and encrypt your bittorrent traffic

But the thing does not end here, the piracy monitoring groups can follow you till the anonymizer service. They can check your log and see your activity of what you have downloaded and what not. The only thing to escape from this is to make sure your anonymizer service provider is a good one and that they don’t keep any logs.

The ISP sees if you are connected to any proxy or not, it can see that. The privacy monitors can see whether the proxy service is sharing a file or not. What if you encrypt the BitTorrent traffic, the ISP will not come to know that you are even using BitTorrent. You should know certain things before you proceed with finding the anonymizer service.

They are not free, especially if you are finding a good anonymizer service it will not come free. You have to pay at least $6.95 a month which is not a big amount to get privacy. The next thing is a slow speed. When you are using a connection of another server, the download speed is sure to decrease.

The torrents which are popularly used can maintain their speed of 3.4 MB per second but the torrents which are less popular and frequently used suffers a speed decrease of almost half. The speed comes down to 500-600 KB per second from 1 MB per second. When you are planning to have a proxy, you should check your torrent client.

The other alternative of proxy is a VPN which is a virtual private network. It is very similar to a proxy, the only difference is that proxy reroutes your BitTorrent traffic and the VPN anonymizes all your web traffic. Some people might consider VPN more useful than Proxy because of this reason. It is on you to choose what suits you best.

Anonymity, Security and Safety

Anonymize BitTorrent traffic with BTguard

If you’re using BitTorrent without taking special measures to hide your activity, it’s just a matter of time before your ISP throttles your connection. Here’s how to set up a simple proxy to keep your torrenting safe and anonymous.

How BTGuard Works

How to anonymize and encrypt your bittorrent traffic

When you download or seed a torrent, you’re connecting to a bunch of other people, called a swarm, all of whom—in order to share files—can see your computer’s IP address. That’s all very handy when you’re sharing files with other netizens, but file sharers such as yourself aren’t necessarily the only people paying attention. Piracy monitoring groups (often paid for by the entertainment industry either before or after they find violators) also join BitTorrent swarms, but instead of sharing files, they’re logging the IP addresses of other people in the swarm—including you—so that they can notify your ISP of your doings. A proxy (like BTGuard) funnels your internet traffic—in this case, just your BitTorrent traffic—through another server, so that the BitTorrent swarm will show an IP address from a server that can’t be traced back to you instead of the address that points to your house.

But wait, can’t the piracy groups then go to the anonymizer service (BTGuard) and requisition their logs to figure out that you’re the one downloading? Theoretically, yes, but the reason why I chose BTGuard is because they don’t keep logs, so there’s no paper trail of activity leading back to you. All the piracy monitors see is BTGuard sharing a file, and all your ISP sees is you connecting to BTGuard—but not what data you’re downloading, because it’s encrypted.

If you subscribe to an ISP that throttles BitTorrent traffic (click here to see the worst offenders), and aren’t using an anonymizer service, you have an additional problem. Your ISP can still see what you’re doing, and if they detect that you’re using BitTorrent—even if you’re using it for perfectly legal purposes—they’ll throttle your connection so you get unbearably slow speeds. When you encrypt your BitTorrent traffic, your ISP can’t see what you’re using your connection for. They’ll see that you’re downloading lots of information, but they won’t be able to see that it’s BitTorrent traffic, and thus won’t throttle your connection. You still have to be careful of going over your ISP’s bandwidth cap, however, if that exists.

BTGuard offers you both a proxy (to combat spying) and encryption (to combat throttling)—though many torrent clients have encryption built-in as well.

Proxies aren’t supported by every client, which means you’ll have to use one with more advanced features. uTorrent (for Windows) BTguard also isn’t free.

How to Set Up BTGuard

BTGuard has a one-click install process, but we’re going to show you how to do it the manual way, since it works in any BitTorrent client that supports SOCKS5 Proxy—not just the ones supported by BTGuard’s installer. It’ll also give you a better sense of what exactly BTGuard does, so if you run into problems, you’ll have a better idea of how to fix it.

Step One:

Sign up for an account over at BTGuard.com. It’ll just take a minute, and then you can get to configuring your client. Their BitTorrent proxy service costs $6.95 a month, but you can get discounts by buying multiple months at a time (up to a year’s service for $59.95). Once you’re done, you should receive an email telling you that BTGuard is ready to go. I don’t need to tell you for extra security never pay for a VPN with your private information, or in anyway that can be traced back to you.

Step Two: Configure Your Client:

Next, open up your torrent client of choice and find the proxy settings within its preferences. In uTorrent, for example, this is under Preferences > Connection. Your client may have them in a different place (Google around to find out where), but no matter your client, your settings should look like this:

  • Proxy Type: Socks v5
  • Proxy Host: proxy.btguard.com
  • Proxy Port: 1025
  • Username: Your BTGuard username
  • Password: Your BTGuard password

How to anonymize and encrypt your bittorrent traffic

You’ll also want to make sure you’re using the proxy for hostname or tracker lookups as well as peer-to-peer connections, so check all boxes that say anything like that. You’ll also want to disable connections or features that could compromise the proxy, so check all the boxes under uTorrent’s “Proxy Privacy” section, or anything similar that your client may have. Hit Apply, exit the preferences, and restart your client. Your proxy should now be active.

Step Three: See If It’s Working:

How to anonymize and encrypt your bittorrent traffic

To ensure that it’s working, head over to CheckMyTorrentIP.com. This site can tell you what your IP address is, and compare it to the IP address of your torrent client, which will let you know whether your proxy is working correctly. To test it, hit the “Generate Torrent” button, and open the resulting torrent in your client. Then, go back to your browser and hit the Refresh button under the “Check IP” tab. If it’s the same as your browser IP—which you’ll see next to the Refresh button—then your proxy isn’t working, and you’ll want to double-check all of the above settings. If it shows a different IP address , then BTGuard is successfully tunneling all your traffic for you.

Step Four (Optional): Enable Encryption:

How to anonymize and encrypt your bittorrent traffic

If you want extra security (or if you’re trying to protect your connection from being throttled), you’ll also want to encrypt all that traffic. Many clients have this feature built-in. In uTorrent, for example, just head to Preferences > BitTorrent and look for the “Protocol Encryption” section. Change your outgoing connection to Forced encryption, and uncheck the “Allow incoming legacy connections” box. From there, you should be good—your ISP shouldn’t throttle your connection after this is enabled.

How to anonymize and encrypt your bittorrent trafficThe ISPs are again and again being forced to keep a check on the data flows through such torrent download websites so that online piracy may be curbed. This can be threatening news for BitTorrent users as the use of such platforms may end up in receiving a legal notice issued on your name from a lawyer asking you to show up in the courts. The grounds for this case on you as expected will be copyright infringement and being part of illegal distribution of copyrighted information.

One really needs to gear up from getting saved from such legal actions due to use of BitTorrent platform for uploading and downloading of data online. This does not mean that one needs to leave this platform and find some other alternative. There are several tools and softwares available that will help you to stay clear of such fuss in later point of time. You can anonymize or encrypt the data being shared through BitTorrent network.

So, we see that the use of such services for anonymity can really help anyone to make file transfers that are completely secure. The use of such tools ensures masking of your IP address and save it from exposition on World Wide Web.

Technology Advice by Ryan Taylor Adams

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    How to Encrypt BitTorrent Traffic

    December 13th, 2007 · No Comments · Printer Friendly Version

    WARNING! THIS POST IS MORE THAN 180 DAYS OLD!

    While I make an effort to update older posts to keep them relevant and technically accurate, the rapidly changing nature of the tech world makes it possible that the content of this post may no longer be relevant, current, or even accurate. Additionally, because of this post’s age, adding new comments has been disabled. If you would like to contribute new information to this post, or have questions pertaining to this post, please use the Contact Form.

    Encrypting your torrents will prevent throttling ISP’s from limiting your BitTorrent bandwidth and potential stop packet snooping. The encryption obfuscates not only the header but all the BitTorrent data. This makes it very hard for your ISP to determine if that data coming to your computer is from BitTorrent. Read on to find out how to enable encryption:

    Do I even need encryption? Good question, if your primary goal is to prevent your ISP from limiting your BitTorrent speeds then check the list here to see if your ISP does throttle bandwidth.

    To use encryption in Azureus:

    1. Go to: Tools > Options > Connection > Transport Encryption
    2. Check the require encrypted transport box.
    3. Choose RC4 in the minimum encryption dropdown box.
    4. You can choose to check the Allow non-encrypted outgoing connections if encrypted connection attempt fails box. This will ensure compatibility with clients that are not using encryption. However, it makes it easier for your ISP to detect BitTorrent traffic.
    5. Check the Allow non-encrypted incoming connections box.

    To use encryption in uTorrent:

    1. Go to: Options > Preferences > BitTorrent
    2. Go to ‘Protocol encryption’, you can choose between enabled and forced.
    3. Checking Allow legacy incoming connections allows non ecrypted clients to connect to you.

    DerniГЁres actualitГ©s, Г©vГЁnements et opГ©rations spГ©ciales de Trust.Zone

    Do you know that BitTorent and anonymity are not the same things?

    If you really want to keep your torrent activity private, your best way involves routing your BitTorrent connection through an anonymous services like proxy, Tor or VPN.

    The simplest way to anonymize your torrenting is anonymous proxy server. By connecting to the web through proxies, your IP address will be hidden but IP address of the proxy server will be shown. Unfortunately, if you’re lucky to find a working proxy – it almost certainly wouldn’t be working the next time you came back. Besides, the proxy servers mostly handle HTTP or HTTPs traffic only. So, if you are trying to download files with FTP – you are not able to do that with proxy.

    How to anonymize and encrypt your bittorrent traffic

    Another way, Tor, a free tool for enabling anonymous communication. In fact in many cases there could be a lot of data leaks as described in this paper: Compromising Tor Anonymity Exploiting P2P Information Leakage , so, the Tor is also not a good idea to hide torrent activity. Forward your BitTorrent traffic through the Tor network will overload it even more. It isn’t designed to handle such things — the Tor network has much less capacity than it has users wanting to use it.

    With VPN your BitTorrent traffic will be completely anonymous. The IP will be replaced by IP address of the VPN server. If you choose to encrypt as well as anonymize, even your ISP won’t be able to see what you’re doing and visiting.

    Some Internet Service Providers are beginning to throttle BitTorrent traffic. Most BitTorrent clients offer options to you to avoid the throttling, and the most common way is to enable encryption so that all of your BitTorrent streams are encrypted.. Torrentfreak.com has posted a guide that explains to you how you can configure encryption in the three popular torrent clients Azureus, Bitcomet and uTorrent.

    The RC4 encryption obfuscates not only the header but the entire stream. This means that it’s very hard for your ISP to detect that the traffic you are generating comes from BitTorrent.

    Note that RC4 uses more CPU time than the plain encryption or no encryption. It is however harder to identify for traffic shaping devices

    If you think that your connection may be throttled try this little tweak and see if there are any changes to the speed of the downloads and uploads. The site also posted a link to a list of ISPs that are or want to throttle torrent streams.

    In uTorrent, you need to click on Options > Preferences > Bittorrent, and locate the protocol encryption menu on the page there. Switch it to enabled first, and test your download and upload speeds for at least a couple of minutes. If they improve, all is well and you do not need to do anything else. If they do not improve, switch the setting to forced again which encrypts all outgoing traffic automatically.

    How to anonymize and encrypt your bittorrent traffic

    You may also want to experiment with the allow incoming legacy connections box. Enable it first to see if the speed improves afterwards. If it does not, disable it again.

    I recommend that you enable protocol encryption even if your current BitTorrent traffic is not limited or throttled by your Internet Service Provider. It is a precautionary measure that you should consider nevertheless. Check out the guide over at Torrentfreak if you are using one of the other clients instead.