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March 4, 2021

Everything You Should Know About VPNs and Anonymous Torrenting

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In 2021, downloading anything from the internet can be risky. Aside from the risk of viruses infecting your devices, many downloads are riddled with malware and other tricks designed to steal your data. This is especially true when it comes to torrenting, a specific method for downloading files. Torrenting relies on a network of users who store and share files on their own computers, rather than having those files stored on a central server. Unfortunately, if you don’t protect yourself properly, you may accidentally give away your personal data. That’s where a VPN comes in. Let’s talk VPNs and anonymous torrenting:

  • What do VPNs do?
  • The basics of torrenting
  • VPNs and anonymous torrenting

What Do VPNs Do?

A reliable VPN provides secure internet access by encrypting all the data you send and receive. The VPN service funnels all the data to and from your device through a “tunnel” which effectively makes your data invisible to outsiders. Even if a hacker manages to “see” your data, the encryption used by the VPN translates it into unreadable gobbledygook, so no one can see your activity without being authorized.

Reliable VPNs are so secure that not even your internet service provider can see your activity, let alone other internet spies like advertisers, hackers, or government agencies.

The Basics of Torrenting

Torrenting is one of the quickest ways to download and share large files online. Torrenting uses peer-to-peer (P2P) technology, which means that users exchange data directly from computer to computer.

When you download a torrent file, your torrent program connects you to other users who already have the file on their computer (called seeders) so you can download it from them. Unfortunately, through your IP address, all users in the torrent network can identify you should they so choose. This is why it’s crucial to connect to a VPN when you’re downloading or seeding a torrent.

VPNs and Anonymous Torrenting

Torrenting and P2P technology make your computer especially vulnerable to invasions of privacy. When you download or share files through a torrenting website, you also share your IP address with any users of that network who happen to be paying attention. Other torrenters aren’t the only ones who patrol these networks and benefit from learning your private data. Third parties like copyright trolls and hackers can profit from information as basic as your IP address.

Once third parties have your IP address in hand, there’s a lot they can do:

  • Harassment: Copyright trolls have permission from media companies and record labels to harass anyone who downloads a copyrighted file. Thousands of lawsuits have been directed at torrent users in the last few years. This is possible because trolls can identify you through your IP. 
  • Phishing: Torrenting sites may contain pop-up ads and fake torrent links that lead to accidentally downloading malware and viruses. In addition, if they can glean your email address from your data, they can send you malicious emails directly.
  • Slow Your Connection: Criminals and trolls aren’t the only ones who can cause you problems if they see you torrenting. If your internet service provider sees that your IP address is using torrents, they may throttle your internet speed and slow your connection down.

Using a VPN to mask your IP address solves all of these problems. This way, no one on your P2P network—or anyone else on the internet, for that matter—can track your online activities in any way. A good VPN can make all your downloads anonymous.

Unfortunately, not all VPN services are equal. Some are less safe than others and allow your IP address to slip through cracks in their security. Many VPNs claim to be safe for torrenting, but you need to do your due diligence to make sure your service of choice has P2P-optimized servers.

Conclusion

These days, everything you click online has the potential to compromise your data. You need a reliable VPN service, especially if you’re sharing files on P2P networks. The best VPNs mask your IP address at all times so that you are kept safe from malicious parties and even from your own internet service provider.

Are you looking for a high-quality, affordable VPN service? HotBot VPN connects you to a hacker-proof, encrypted tunnel for all your internet activity. Browsing, streaming, and downloading are all secure using our anonymous, worldwide VPN network. Download HotBot VPN today for your Android, iOS, and Windows devices! 

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