How to Stay Safe on Torrent Sites
Torrenting sites can be a very useful thing for the average person, allowing them to get access to large files without having to have physical media available and also transfer and share data with other people all over the internet. They have been around for some years now and they are not going anywhere, considering their growth and widespread use all over the world.
Yet they can also carry considerable risks to the average consumer. You don’t always know what you might get in the files that you download, and most torrent sites allow for just about anybody to upload just about anything and call it whatever they like. It may have the community police the content, but this isn’t always effective and isn’t fast enough to protect everybody.
Therefore I recommend everyone take into consideration this advice when using torrenting websites:
Use Only Relatively Trustworthy Sites:
Before you pick a website to do most of your torrenting on, try to do some research on which websites have the best reputation and which ones will treat the user the best and be the most secure for the user. While this may not seem like an easy task, there are many forums, websites, and other sources available that will help you track down the very best website for you.
In addition, don’t pick the website that looks the easiest to you, as easiest certainly does not mean safest. In fact, a lot of hackers or those who wish to mean you harm will pick these sites to put their attention to because people will flock to them for their ease of use. Don’t become one of their victims. If you are ever uncertain with a website, always just pass it by and look for a new one. Impatience is not worth losing your computer or your financial data over.
Use a VPN:
If you are going to be using a torrenting site, you need a VPN (Virtual Private Network). There is no way around it. It is the best way to keep your identity safe while you download, and also no one else will be able to look at what you are doing while using a VPN. When you are trying to download what you need, the last thing you need to worry about is whether you have someone else looking in on you, regardless of what or who they are. This is especially true if you are using a generally not secure public network.
In short, what it does is that it creates an impenetrable bridge between your computer and that of a secure offsite server which gets your data for you and sends it back to you. This can make it look like you are using the internet in another country (or some other region in your own country), which allows you to bypass regional restrictions if there are any for some reason. In addition, it will allow to bypass a great deal of government censorship if the government of our particular country has blocked off a torrenting website you like.
Here is a great website that will help you pick out a VPN for the purpose of using a torrent website: http://securethoughts.com/3-best-vpns-for-torrents-filesharing-and-p2p/
While it is considered a good practice to share with others when you are using torrenting sites or programs, it is not so good a practice for the purposes of your security. If you are sharing things, you can be more easily tracked by either the government, corporations, or other people that use the torrenting site. This can be a major risk to you and you might wind up suffering legal penalties if you are sharing copyrighted materials.
This is why you should generally avoid trying to share things or opening up your connection any more than it really has to. Unless there is some system in place (which I would generally recommend avoiding), there is no benefit to putting yourself at risk other than the illusion of shame. In fact, anything you might plan on uploading has likely already been uploaded multiple times by other people, so don’t feel like you are depriving the world of anything. Instead feel like you are depriving yourself of a headache.
Check the Feedback:
A lot of torrenting websites out there have some sort of system where you can vote on or comment on a particular upload. If a lot of people are saying it is no good, then heed their warning and stay as far away as you can. If a lot say that it is a good link, then you should still be cautious but you can be a little more comfortable with the link.
Sometimes you will not have any feedback available, and in fact this will likely be what you have to deal with. You will then still have to use your best judgement in taking a look at exactly what you might be downloading, as the best sites will always have some sort of advanced information on what was uploaded, just so you can properly check what you might be downloading.
Have a Security Suite Program
On a last brief note, you should absolutely have a security suite program that covers both malware and viruses before you start torrenting anything. You need to be able to scan your computer, and you will also need to be able to get rid of anything that does accidentally get on your computer. You should have one anyway, but it is a must-have item for torrenting.
Related to this, also make sure that you update any programs that have to do with security before you torrent. People will upload the latest malware to torrent sites, so you need to have the latest protections available.
I hope that you will take into consideration all of this information in order to make your torrenting experience a much better and safer one. Thank you for reading.