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Just how anonymous are my Usenet postings?

 
 
Mxsmanic
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      10-02-2003
Phillip Shaver writes:

> No, I'm not worried about a subpoena or anything like that,
> just an obnoxious user in a very non-adult newsgroup I visit.
> I'm sure the CIA, FBI, NSA or even local PD could find anyone
> if they really wanted to, but my concerns are not nearly that
> important!


In that case, there exist any number of commercial news servers that
will hide your IP address and make you very hard to track down without a
court order or the equivalent.

> Where did you get "68.4.17.224" at "Thu, 02 Oct 2003
> 15:20:08 EDT"? Is that me, and if so, how does one find that?


Many news servers add a header to your message that gives your IP
address, usually with a field like "NNTP-Posting-Host."

Right click on a message and select Properties in Outlook Express, and
you should be able to see these headers.

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Mxsmanic
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      10-02-2003
Bert Hyman writes:

> In news:Tc%eb.167160$(E-Mail Removed) "Juan
> R. Pollo" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>
> > Actually, all that would show is that the message came from a particular
> > connection, not who the author or sender were.

>
> True, but once they know the owner of the account under which the
> connection was made, that's when the thumb screws come out


They still have to prove that the owner of the account was also the user
of the account at the time.

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Mxsmanic
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      10-02-2003
Mark Roberts writes:

> But Cox's server logs would show who was using that IP address at the
> time of the post. A quick check with Cox' billing department would yield
> name, address, credit card #, etc.


If they keep the logs.

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Mxsmanic
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      10-02-2003
Sam Smith writes:

> But Cox's server logs, name, address, credit card numbers would not be
> accessible by non-law enforcement people, right?


That would depend on Cox.

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Mxsmanic
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      10-02-2003
Mark Roberts writes:

> Well, anyone with a subpoena.
> Could be law enforcement people in the case of a criminal act, but a
> civil case could also be an avenue. You could file a lawsuit and go
> through the time end expense but the judge wouldn't grant the subpoena
> unless you could show cause why you needed it.


Actually, you can force it pretty simply under the DMCA. Some groups
use bogus copyright-infringement claims under the DMCA to force ISPs to
provide this information.

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Louise Bremner
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      10-02-2003
"Sam Smith" <(E-Mail Removed)> top-posted, over a full quote of the
thread so far:

> So, Bert, if I change my "Phillip" fake name to this "Sam" fame name (and
> email address), you're saying the header info is the same? Again, where
> does one find the header info?


Might I suggest that, if you don't even know how to look at headers, you
shouldn't even _think_ of trying to be anonymous?

Note that if you are the only person who has posted to that newsgroup
from that ISP in the recent past, you would be the obvious suspect, no
matter how you change your name.

__________________________________________________ ______________________
Louise Bremner (log at gol dot com)
If you want a reply by e-mail, don't write to my Yahoo address!
 
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Bert Hyman
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      10-02-2003
In news:(E-Mail Removed) Mxsmanic
<(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

> Bert Hyman writes:
>
>> In news:Tc%eb.167160$(E-Mail Removed)
>> "Juan R. Pollo" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>>
>> > Actually, all that would show is that the message came from a
>> > particular connection, not who the author or sender were.

>>
>> True, but once they know the owner of the account under which the
>> connection was made, that's when the thumb screws come out

>
> They still have to prove that the owner of the account was also the user
> of the account at the time.


Well, that's what the thumb screws are for. If that fails, there's always
The Comfy Chair.

--
Bert Hyman St. Paul, MN http://www.velocityreviews.com/forums/(E-Mail Removed)
 
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Don Coon
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      10-02-2003

"Bert Hyman" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:Xns94089ABEAB84FVeebleFetzer@209.98.13.60...
> In news:kB%eb.38047$gv5.12097@fed1read05 "Sam Smith" <(E-Mail Removed)>
> wrote:
>
> > So, Bert, if I change my "Phillip" fake name to this "Sam" fame name
> > (and email address), you're saying the header info is the same? Again,
> > where does one find the header info?

>
> Yes. Here's the header generated when you're posing as "(E-Mail Removed)"
>
> X-Trace: fed1read05 1065125328 68.4.17.224 (Thu, 02 Oct 2003 16:08:48 EDT)
>
> Looks remarkably the same as before, doesn't it?
>
> As to how to find the headers with Outlook Express, I'm afraid someone

else
> will have to show you; I've never used it.


RE" Outlook Express

Right click on the message and select properties from the drop down menu.
Here's part of what OE shows you:

Path:
rwcrnsc51.ops.asp.att.net!attbi_slave52!attbi_mast er51!attbi_feed3!attbi.com
!204.127.161.5!wn11feed!worldnet.att.net!128.230.1 29.106!news.maxwell.syr.ed
u!in.100proofnews.com!in.100proofnews.com!cox.net! news-xfer.cox.net!p01!fed1
read05.POSTED!not-for-mail
Reply-To: "Sam Smith" <(E-Mail Removed)>
From: "Sam Smith" <(E-Mail Removed)>
Newsgroups: rec.photo.digital
References: <IT_eb.37973$gv5.15439@fed1read05>
<Xns940894146C83DVeebleFetzer@209.98.13.60>
<Wb%eb.38023$gv5.37925@fed1read05>
<Xns9408979D68534VeebleFetzer@209.98.13.60>
<Rq%eb.38043$gv5.4373@fed1read05>
Subject: Re: Just how anonymous are my Usenet postings?
Lines: 89
X-Priority: 3
X-MSMail-Priority: Normal
X-Newsreader: Microsoft Outlook Express 6.00.2800.1158
X-MimeOLE: Produced By Microsoft MimeOLE V6.00.2800.1165
Message-ID: <kB%eb.38047$gv5.12097@fed1read05>
Date: Thu, 2 Oct 2003 13:08:46 -0700
<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<< Here it is
NNTP-Posting-Host: 68.4.17.224
<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<
X-Complaints-To: (E-Mail Removed)
X-Trace: fed1read05 1065125328 68.4.17.224 (Thu, 02 Oct 2003 16:08:48 EDT)
NNTP-Posting-Date: Thu, 02 Oct 2003 16:08:48 EDT
Organization: Cox Communications
Xref: attbi_master51 rec.photo.digital:345081
X-Received-Date: Thu, 02 Oct 2003 20:08:49 GMT (rwcrnsc51.ops.asp.att.net)

So, Bert, if I change my "Phillip" fake name to this "Sam" fame name (and
email address), you're saying the header info is the same? Again, where
does one find the header info?


 
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Darrell Larose
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Posts: n/a
 
      10-02-2003

"Phillip Shaver" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:IT_eb.37973$gv5.15439@fed1read05...
> How can anyone really tell if my Usenet postings are really from me or

not?
>
> If I use a fake email address (like so many do), is there another way to
> find out one's identity (from headers, TCPIP addresses, etc.)?
>

When you post the main headers are not shown, in MS Outlook highlight the
post right click>properties>details>reveal source> In your case because you
asked;

Path:
news04.bloor.is.net.cable.rogers.com!cyclone01.blo or.is.net.cable.rogers.com
!chi1.webusenet.com!news.webusenet.com!peer02.cox. net!cox.net!p01!fed1read05
..POSTED!not-for-mail
Reply-To: "Phillip Shaver" <(E-Mail Removed)>
From: "Phillip Shaver" <(E-Mail Removed)>
Newsgroups: rec.photo.digital
Subject: Just how anonymous are my Usenet postings?
Lines: 6
X-Priority: 3
X-MSMail-Priority: Normal
X-Newsreader: Microsoft Outlook Express 6.00.2800.1158
X-MimeOLE: Produced By Microsoft MimeOLE V6.00.2800.1165
Message-ID: <IT_eb.37973$gv5.15439@fed1read05>
Date: Thu, 2 Oct 2003 12:20:03 -0700
NNTP-Posting-Host: 68.4.17.224
X-Complaints-To: (E-Mail Removed)
X-Trace: fed1read05 1065122408 68.4.17.224 (Thu, 02 Oct 2003 15:20:08 EDT)
NNTP-Posting-Date: Thu, 02 Oct 2003 15:20:08 EDT
Organization: Cox Communications
Xref: cyclone01.bloor.is.net.cable.rogers.com rec.photo.digital:317270
X-Received-Date: Thu, 02 Oct 2003 15:20:10 EDT
(news04.bloor.is.net.cable.rogers.com)

How can anyone really tell if my Usenet postings are really from me or not?

If I use a fake email address (like so many do), is there another way to
find out one's identity (from headers, TCPIP addresses, etc.)?

NNTP-Posting-Host: 68.4.17.224, I've tried ping, and your PC seems to have a
firewall which blocked the ping, which is good!

There is all the info that is shown, I can take your assigned IP and find
this; ip68-4-17-224.oc.oc.cox.net

The oc.oc means that your server is in Orange County, CA?





 
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Darrell Larose
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      10-02-2003

"Mxsmanic" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed)...
> Phillip Shaver writes:
>
> > How can anyone really tell if my Usenet postings
> > are really from me or not?

>
> Nobody can know for sure if you are really you or not, unless you
> digitally sign your posts.
>
> > If I use a fake email address (like so many do), is
> > there another way to find out one's identity (from headers,
> > TCPIP addresses, etc.)?

>
> Not reliably, without digital signatures.
>

If I have a static IP or a DHCP lease on a dynamic IP my ISP will just
assume the post came from me as I signed the contract. If my roommate
violated my TOS and let's say spammed the World, or tried to hack into DND's
system. They will point the finger at me. The message to me will look like
this;

"It has been brought to our attention that a user from your provisioned IP
is posting off-topic messages to discussion group(s) which is contrary the
discussion group charter / FAQ. These kinds of messages are considered
"SPAM". Please see the included details below."



 
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