Any advantages of paying with BitCoins for VPNs you use directly?

Discussion in 'privacy technology' started by Gnikf, Aug 15, 2012.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Gnikf

    Gnikf Registered Member

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2012
    Posts:
    40
    Sure you can pay them anonymously but if it's your first VPN, they know your IP, so is there an advantage to anonymously paying that I'm missing?

    Which of the good VPNs actually take BitCoins btw?
    Seems like there are just a couple and that's weird, it's pretty easy to start accepting them, and should be big + for lots of people here.
     
  2. mirimir

    mirimir Registered Member

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2011
    Posts:
    6,030
    As you say, VPNs that you use directly know your IP address. And your ISP knows that you use them. However, getting from your IP address to your name does require your ISP's cooperation. Paying anonymously might frustrate an attacker that got information from your VPN, but doesn't have credentials to get your ISP's cooperation. But there's not much point in being highly anonymous. Bitcoin is enough.

    As far as I know, AirVPN, Cryptohippie and Mullvard take Bitcoins. It's been a while since I've looked, so there may be others.
     
  3. Gnikf

    Gnikf Registered Member

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2012
    Posts:
    40
    yup, makes sense
    and it takes one more jurisdiction

    thank you! :)
     
  4. PaulyDefran

    PaulyDefran Registered Member

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2011
    Posts:
    1,163
    Yes, because:

    1. If the VPN Provider themselves are the target, working backwards from them, via CC/PayPal payment records (which live forever) will not yield any hits for you. AirVPN deletes your connection info the minute you disconnect.

    2. If you are the target, while the ISP can say "This residential account connects to this IP a lot, and it looks to be a VPN", there is no corroborating info in your bank accounts that it is indeed *you* who are using it. Courts are more and more finding that an IP isn't a person.

    PD
     
  5. Gnikf

    Gnikf Registered Member

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2012
    Posts:
    40
    makes a lot of sense, thanks!
     
  6. luciddream

    luciddream Registered Member

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2007
    Posts:
    2,497
    Definitely, yes over just using a CC/Paypal. However... it is not anonymous. It should not be considered as such. It makes it much harder but it does leave a trail. A trail which can, and don't kid yourself, WILL be followed if "the man" really wants to find you.

    The only truly anonymous method is money sent with no personally identifiable info. needed to set up the account, or return address on the envelope (oops, lol).

    Gift cards set up via a dummy email account with fade credentials would be a 2'nd option, but "the man" has made it seemingly impossible to use this method anymore.

    So as such, given this criteria, Mullvad is the only service that offers a truly, 100% anonymous payment method if you ask me.
     
  7. PaulyDefran

    PaulyDefran Registered Member

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2011
    Posts:
    1,163
    While I agree that, like computer security, nothing is 100%...

    Connecting to BitInstant via Tor, from an open access point not near you, and driving miles away to a bank to deposit cash (don't park near by, walk, and wear hats, glasses, etc... if you want), and then doing the same when checking a disposable email address, and connecting to the BitCoin network via Tor, and running the coins through the laundry a few times....is pretty darn anonymous.

    'Regular' BitCoin use via your home ISP and using Dwolla/Mt. Gox, I agree. But the former is a tough nut to crack, IMO. 100%? Nothing is...but 99% is good enough for me.

    But you're correct in that if you can wait, and Mullvad suits your needs, mailing cash is king.

    PD
     
  8. mirimir

    mirimir Registered Member

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2011
    Posts:
    6,030
    I agree with what luciddream and PaulyDefran say about Bitcoins and cash.

    However, it isn't worth going to such extremes to pay for VPNs that you access directly.

    It's only worth that for VPNs etc that you access via other VPNs or Tor, IMHO.
     
  9. PaulyDefran

    PaulyDefran Registered Member

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2011
    Posts:
    1,163
    Good point Mir.

    PD
     
  10. luciddream

    luciddream Registered Member

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2007
    Posts:
    2,497
    Yep, agree with both of you. And it's thanks to a post of yours that I realized how futile it was to expect true anonymity from just 1 VPN, no matter how I paid.
     
  11. ComputerSaysNo

    ComputerSaysNo Registered Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2012
    Posts:
    1,428
    You could pay in peanuts and it wouldn't matter I don't think in the end.
     
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2012
Loading...
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.