VPN: Signing Up Anonymously?

Discussion in 'privacy technology' started by NormanN, Nov 15, 2011.

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

    NormanN Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2011
    Posts:
    67
    I'm in the process of choosing a VPN provider from the other thread on this discussion. I won't go into all the details of trying to get this to work with a cash bought, Pre-Paid Visa (couldn't), but this got me thinking:

    My ISP can see me connect to the VPN IP address, correct? So how does signing up anonymously help? If I was a target for monitoring, nothing can hide the first connection to the VPN. Finding out that the IP address is a VPN service provider is also easy. From there, a request would be sent for information for the connection coming from my regular ISP provider's IP. The only protection seems to be the fact that no logs would be kept, and of course, the encrypted tunnel traffic. I could see anonymous sign up being favorable if you only ever used it from any location that isn't your home, but from a home computer, is anonymous sign up worth doing?

    Thanks,

    NN
     
  2. mirimir

    mirimir Registered Member

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2011
    Posts:
    6,028
    I agree with your assessment.

    Anonymous signup is only useful for VPN services that you will tunnel through VPN services that you access directly. For directly accessed VPN services, key criteria are low latency, high bandwidth and usage limit, and geopolitical separation from indirectly accessed VPN services.
     
  3. LockBox

    LockBox Registered Member

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2004
    Posts:
    2,275
    Location:
    Here, There and Everywhere
    The ONLY Visa card that I know will work with EVERYTHING is the one you get from Simon Malls. Go by, pay cash, walk away with a gift card (up to $500) and I've never had it denied anywhere - Amazon, PayPal, Netflix, nowhere. "Vanilla" branded Visa cards are worthless for signing-up for services or products where a credit card must be "on file" for an account. They aren't accepted. Those of you who have a Simon Mall in your city - use it for their gift cards. If you take a trip or vacation to a "Simon city" grab a couple for anonymity.

    The reason, by the way, is that some cards are treated as "debit cards" (all reloadable cards are) and anything marketed as "prepaid card." The Simon cards are neither "debit" or "prepaid" as they are marketed as "Gift Cards." That's the difference - or at least what a Visa representative told me when I inquired at one time.
     
  4. mirimir

    mirimir Registered Member

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2011
    Posts:
    6,028
    Thanks.

    So, they do not require ID? They do record video, I'm sure. But they probably do not run facial recognition (yet).
     
  5. CasperFace

    CasperFace Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2010
    Posts:
    200
    Yes, but that's the whole point of using an anonymity service such as a VPN... so that you don't become a target for ISP monitoring in the first place. As long as you didn't/don't do anything foolish to expose your real identity while surfing anonymously, then you should have nothing to worry about.
     
  6. CasperFace

    CasperFace Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2010
    Posts:
    200
    No; there'd be no reason to require an ID for buying a gift card. All you're basically doing is exchanging paper money for "plastic" money. And since it's a gift card, your identity is irrelevant... you'll be registering it under someone else's name anyway.

    As far as video cameras in stores, don't forget about the one in the parking lot recording your license plate number, too. But... let's try to be realistic. There's no way they're going to go through THAT much trouble to track someone down unless it's something REALLY serious, like a homicide investigation.
     
  7. NormanN

    NormanN Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2011
    Posts:
    67
    The problem I found with the cards, is that nothing on the outside indicates this, but inside they sate that US transactions only, will be accepted. I don't know about that Simon Mall card, has anyone used it for overseas transactions?

    The VPN provider replied to my email on this question, and said it does help if someone tried to work backwards from them. They're the pro's so it's cash or Bitcoin at this point.

    NN
     
  8. markedmanner

    markedmanner Registered Member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2009
    Posts:
    134
    I think analysis is basically correct. As you stated though if you use a VPN that keeps no logs what information can they give out? Besides I HIGHLY doubt that resources are being used to monitor your specific internet connection.... Unless you are doing things that are highly illegal. VPN is best used as a way to prevent websites from logging your real IP and to protect from ISPs logging what sites you visit. I say for your what you are asking Tor is your best solution though it is slower and i would not send out any personally identifiable information over it like logging into websites etc.
     
  9. caspian

    caspian Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2007
    Posts:
    2,301
    Location:
    Oz
    They can't read your plate from a recorded video, like walmart or wherever, as far as I know. But they can see the car.
     
Loading...
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.