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Thread: ISP Tracking

  1. #1
    Algorithm

    Question ISP Tracking

    I know a lot of us cover our tracks locally by different means. However, I came to wonder if Internet service providers (ISP) keep a record of the website you visit. If so, for how long? Would it take a lot of space?

  2. #2

    Default

    In Canada, no they do not monitor your internet traffic, this would be considered unconstitutional and would violate privacy laws. However the RCMP can get a warrant and have the ISP start monitoring your traffic if they think you're up to no good.

    Shaw utilizes a traffic management system that will throttle and reduce network priority on connections to people who are doing alot of uploading/downloading, but they aren't actually looking specifically at what you're downloading or uploading.

    The conservatives are trying to pass legislation (Or maybe they did already...) that would force all canadian ISP's to buy equipment for monitoring purposes and drop the requirement of the RCMP having a warrant to monitor your traffic. But again this would only be implemented if they were investigating your involvement in a crime.

    If you have gmail, google by default keeps a record of every single search you make, you need to log in to disable this.

  3. #3

    Default



    Quote Originally Posted by Algorithm View Post
    I know a lot of us cover our tracks locally by different means. However, I came to wonder if Internet service providers (ISP) keep a record of the website you visit. If so, for how long? Would it take a lot of space?
    Not sure about the USA, but here in Canada they are not allowed to keep this kind of information without a warrant.

    Logging all the data would use a lot of space, yes. Logging just the IP addresses of the sites (and possibly header information like host) is definitely feasible though.

    If you are really concerned about this, use a service like tor. Tor works by passing your data through a number of nodes.. with encryption all the way to the last node. The last node knows the site you visited (and any data you send/received) but does not know who you are... the first node knows who you are but not where you went.

    _theoretically_ authorities could be running enough tor nodes to control both your first and last node .. and theoretically they could trace every connection if the ISPs logged it.. but we are starting to get into tinfoil hat territory.

  4. #4
    Algorithm

    Default

    Thanks. ISPs keep track of the amount of data used monthly, and then send a bill of the appropriate amount, depending if you went above your limit or not. With that said, if a customer asked the ISP to justify the bill, what proof would they deliver. That got me thinking, and that's how I came up with this question. Actually, how would they justify/prove the amount of data used?

  5. #5

    Default

    They can (and do) monitor bandwidth without actually looking into the packets. Legally there is no problem with this. It's when they look inside the packets (deep packet inspection) at the data that they are running afoul of Canadian law.

    If you questioned a bill, they might give you a breakdown of bandwidth usage by time .. but I imagine you have very little recourse. Internet providers (especially here in Canada) are generally a monopoly, and as most people require internet access, you pretty much have to bend over and take what they give you.

  6. #6

    Default

    Well according ArsTechnica, small ISP's here in the states are doing just that to make money. I can see a federal investigation on the horizon here.

  7. #7

    Default



    Quote Originally Posted by Algorithm View Post
    If so, for how long? Would it take a lot of space?
    just responding to this part as there are different legal conditions around the world.
    time-wise, the data will be held for so long as the storage systems are maintained. space-wise, in the UK we have many unmarked buildings with top-notch security technology (but no bodies about) discretely dispersed around the land; these are the storage facilities for government, internet and businesses (financial, mainly).
    i've been up-close to one and they're quite eerie: tons of cameras, razor-wire, smash proof gates and not a soul in sight. they look like normal industrial units except that they have the security stuff, yet there's no trace of any work ever having been done there (no dust, no vehicles, no tyre marks nor dents and scratches on the doors).
    makes you paranoid just looking at them (as if you're not even supposed to be looking). still, i counted 17 cameras on the building and fence i was near, and that was just from one side.

  8. #8

    Default

    *Sighs* I want to move to Canada for yet another reason.

    In America they started recording EVERYTHING. That's right. Everything. Credit Card numbers. Emails. Passwords.

    Everything.

  9. #9

    Default



    Quote Originally Posted by Entity View Post
    Well according ArsTechnica, small ISP's here in the states are doing just that to make money. I can see a federal investigation on the horizon here.
    Comcast started doing this as well. You had to turn off the DNS redirect by logging into their website and change security settings.
    In America, we have "secret" closets inside AT&T buildings in California (NSA call database - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia).

  10. #10

    Default



    Quote Originally Posted by PrettyFox View Post
    *Sighs* I want to move to Canada for yet another reason.
    Don't pack your bag just yet. Between US inspired(pressured) upcoming DMCA-like laws and bell pushing usage based billing and caps so low that it's a major step _backwards_ in terms of what you can use the internet for today, much less the future... it's not _that_ much greener over here...

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