IP Concealment

Posted on November 17, 2009


We are all aware of what IP addresses are. ..

Let us know the different methods and working of IP concealment

Different users use different technologies, all anonymizers have one thing in common. Whoever wants to explore the World Wide Web anonymously needs an anonymous IP. Here the end user has three options/ methods

  • VPN (Virtual Private Network)
  • Onion Routing and
  • Mix cascades

In the case of VPN, the user must first install the vpn client software, which latches itself on to the system and automatically intercepts all packages sent in the network. Thus in this method the enquires first go to a server via a encrypted tunnel and this server forwards the user to the respective website with new IP. The accessed URL remains invisible to the private provider. Only an anonymous IP is forwarded to the website provider. This is because although the user surfs anonymously outwardly from there on, his complete data is available on the servers of VPN service. If a hacker rummages out his server, he gets the IP address of the user and, if available, even the username and log-in password for the VPN client. Theoretically even the authorities have it easy here. The Data Retention makes it mandatory for German VPN operators to hoard up the IP address. Whether and in which scope they need to release the IP’s of the users has not been explained conclusively.

The Onion Routing, for instance the TOR network has the completely different approach than that by VPN. Here the user does not use the fixed server but many free proxy servers that are available out there. A website enquiry is sent via three Tor servers that are constantly changed and re-encrypted at every station. Identifying a particular user in this network is barely possible. The connection can be monitored if the invader keeps a check on the first and last node. But this does not lead to complete user profile since the connection changes every ten minutes. Even then, monitoring one session would suffice to obtain sensitive data.

Mix cascades are also configured like the Onion Routing, for example Kiran where the user connects to a server (Mix) that encrypts the enquiry and forwards it to other servers (mix cascades). But instead of using the free nodes here, the operators back specific providers. All the users that surf using the same cascades are also forwarded over the same route. Thus, it is possible for the service to mix the connection data of all users to additionally complicate the traceability of a person.

The data retention problem also principally applies to the mix cascades. However, it can be dealt with, if the client can determine the location and the operator of the mix. If he uses three services from three different providers for the instance, tracing back would only be possible with a lot of effort. Moreover, if the mixes are in three different countries, the chances of the data snooper are almost nil.

Posted in: Networks