COTSE?

Discussion in 'Computer Security' started by Anonymous, Jun 26, 2003.

  1. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    I'm looking for an objective opinion of COTSE. Some people swear by it and
    others pridefully use it to launch abuse. How private is it? How
    reliable, etc, etc, etc?
     
    Anonymous, Jun 26, 2003
    #1
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  2. Anonymous

    LLFormat Guest

    On Thu, 26 Jun 2003 00:49:55 -0400, Anonymous typed the following stuff :

    > I'm looking for an objective opinion of COTSE. Some people swear by it and
    > others pridefully use it to launch abuse. How private is it? How
    > reliable, etc, etc, etc?


    Hi,

    In my experience, very reliable. Email-wise, I love their 'gold-list' and
    email aliases. The latter being a clever way to track who might've sold
    your address to spammers. No IP address is sent with any mails either.

    I also welcomed the SSL feature of their email accounts, and the generous
    amount of web space offered. I think the space is something like 50MB, but
    you can go over that as long as you don't take the piss.

    Very quick customer query responses too.

    I personally never got my 'hands dirty' with the web-anonymity tools
    www.cotse.net provide, so I can't comment there.

    HTH.

    Regards,

    LLFormat.
     
    LLFormat, Jun 26, 2003
    #2
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  3. Anonymous

    StopinDaSpam Guest

    Hmmm, one word comes to mind. Carnivore.

    Anonymous wrote:
    > I'm looking for an objective opinion of COTSE. Some people swear by it and
    > others pridefully use it to launch abuse. How private is it? How
    > reliable, etc, etc, etc?
    >



    --


    [i know nothing, NOTHING!] -Sergeant Hans Schultz




    .................................................................
    Posted via TITANnews - Uncensored Newsgroups Access
    >>>> at http://www.TitanNews.com <<<<

    -=Every Newsgroup - Anonymous, UNCENSORED, BROADBAND Downloads=-
     
    StopinDaSpam, Jun 26, 2003
    #3
  4. Anonymous

    [ Doc Jeff ] Guest

    On Thu, 26 Jun 2003 00:49:55 -0400, Anonymous
    <Use-Author-Supplied-Address-Header@[127.1]> wrote:

    >I'm looking for an objective opinion of COTSE. Some people swear by it and
    >others pridefully use it to launch abuse. How private is it? How
    >reliable, etc, etc, etc?


    The best way to determine this is to use it for yourself. The
    cost is so low that you could try it for a month and see if you like
    it. If not, you've spent very little. If you do like it, you can
    continue by paying for another month.

    I've been using COTSE's services for around six months. In
    that time, I have had absolutely nothing negative to say about it. Not
    one thing.

    I have had NO instances of spam or adverts in my COTSE mail
    box in this time. No viruses/trojans either. The options for e-mail
    which are available are, in my opinion, second to none. You can cook
    your mail in just about any conceivable way you can think of with
    COTSE.

    I know of several people who use COTSE's services to avoid
    netkooks and stalkers. I suspect there are a lot more that I don't
    know about because they wish themselves to remain anonymous on the
    net.

    Reliability - in all honesty, every service has reliability
    issues at some time or another. I have never had a single problem
    connecting to COTSE that wasn't explained immediately to my
    satisfaction. That's something else - there's always someone available
    to help you, if not personally then at least through e-mail.

    I recommend COTSE to my own clients and anyone who asks me
    about it (see my sig block). I wouldn't do this if I didn't believe
    the place was worthwhile. I also should add that while I'm not a
    principal of COTSE, I have volunteered my time and abilities in their
    IRC-based helpdesk for a couple of years now. Now seriously - would
    anyone do this if they didn't believe in the service fully? I don't
    think so. :)

    Anyway, do check COTSE out. It is more than worth the price it
    costs. And if you need any help with it, do feel free to ask. I'd be
    more than happy to help.

    Doc


    --
    http://www.cotse.net - Use it, you know you want to.
    If you're too scared to go look for yourself, ask me
    about COTSE. I'd be happy to tell you about it.
     
    [ Doc Jeff ], Jun 26, 2003
    #4
  5. Anonymous

    nemo outis Guest

    In article <7097e46dfbb30cdfba3bd1660eaada94@rebleep>, Anonymous <Use-Author-Supplied-Address-Header@[127.1]> wrote:
    >I'm looking for an objective opinion of COTSE. Some people swear by it and
    >others pridefully use it to launch abuse. How private is it? How
    >reliable, etc, etc, etc?
    >



    Cotse is excellent - as good as it gets. Cheap, too ($6/month)
    considering the range and quality of services.

    They won't protect you if you use the service to make death
    threats to George Bush - but for protecting your privacy they
    will do all that is possible under the law.

    Regards,

    PS You can never be 100% sure that any privacy service
    hasn't been compromised or isn't a honeypot. However, cotse was
    around long before 9/11, the folks who run it have a track record
    for being privacy defenders, and the quality of service bespeaks
    "dedication to the cause." Guaranteed safety? No - not
    possible in this life unless you set the service up yourself,
    and probably not even then . But you won't find a better
    or more trustworthy third-party service.
     
    nemo outis, Jun 26, 2003
    #5
  6. Anonymous

    LLFormat Guest

    Re: COTSE? (off on a tangent ...)

    On Thu, 26 Jun 2003 08:49:47 -0400, StopinDaSpam typed the following stuff
    :

    > Hmmm, one word comes to mind. Carnivore.


    I thought about replying with something witty like ;

    "Here's another. Encryption". I'm glad I didn't as I'm sure to have
    misunderstood your post, and I've no desire to start an argument with
    people who probably know more about computer security topics than I ever
    will.

    I know this is off-topic regarding the original posters' message, but I'm
    curious as to how one would avoid the 'Carnivore' trap.

    Would encrypting emails attract 'unwanted' attention in the first place ?
    As (hopefully) the encryption could not be broken, would the composer of
    the mail in question face two or more years in the slammer for *not*
    handing over the passphrase ?

    I'm asking this as I've been a PGP fan for years. More recently, I've
    become something of a GPG fan on Linux.

    I'd love to use encryption more, just to be sneaky, but I'm nearly always
    faced with the following problems :

    1) Most people I communicate with using email, would most likely think that
    PGP is a new brand of tea.

    2) Or those with slightly longer experience with computers would say;

    "Why would you want to encrypt emails ? What are you hiding ?"

    Annoying, but a fact of life for me.

    Regards,

    LLFormat.
     
    LLFormat, Jun 26, 2003
    #6
  7. In article <Xns93A7857457078collyut@203.59.27.131>,
    says...
    > nemo (nemo outis) wrote in
    > news:7bFKa.292418$:
    >
    > > They won't protect you if you use the service to make death
    > > threats to George Bush - but for protecting your privacy they
    > > will do all that is possible under the law.

    >
    > Interesting paradox:
    >
    > "They won't protect you if you use the service to make death
    > threats to George Bush - but for protecting your privacy they
    > will do all that is possible under the law."
    >
    > If they can't protect my information from the people I need protection from
    > the most, why would I care how SPAM free or whatever their email services
    > are...
    >
    >
    > Uner the law it would be quite easy to protect a customers info from the
    > likes of the government. COTSE keep their access logs for a week after
    > access, much too long for a privacy sevice.


    Five days, it used to be seven, we recently dropped the length of time
    we hold them due to the size. I know, only two days shorter than a week
    so it still fits to say we have them for a week :)

    >
    > And you all make out COTSE's $6 a month as "super low", It's, measly $18
    > saving on Anonymizers service.
    >
    > Then again, the two services are for different types of users...IMO it's
    > hard to beat Anonymizer if you're looking for ACTUAL privacy from everyone
    > including Big Brother.


    Plus they have a more professional looking web site than we do.

    > BUt if you just want privacy to get away from freaks
    > and the like I would say COTSE is better...
    >


    That's true, we aren't designed to give you anonymity from the US
    government because we operate under their laws. However, I don't think
    anonymizer can provide that either for much the same reasons. If you
    need that kind of anonymity don't trust any single service, use the
    remailers.

    /steve
    --
    http://www.cotse.net
    A very unique privacy service, no other service compares.
    E-mail, Usenet, Anon Proxies, Web Hosting, and more.
    No one gives you more control over your e-mail than we do!
    http://www.cotse.net/servicedetails.html
     
    Stephen K. Gielda, Jun 27, 2003
    #7
  8. Anonymous

    nemo outis Guest

    In article <Xns93A7857457078collyut@203.59.27.131>, LL <> wrote:
    >nemo (nemo outis) wrote in
    >news:7bFKa.292418$:
    >
    >> They won't protect you if you use the service to make death
    >> threats to George Bush - but for protecting your privacy they
    >> will do all that is possible under the law.

    >
    >Interesting paradox:
    >
    >"They won't protect you if you use the service to make death
    >threats to George Bush - but for protecting your privacy they
    >will do all that is possible under the law."
    >
    >If they can't protect my information from the people I need protection from
    >the most, why would I care how SPAM free or whatever their email services
    >are...
    >
    >
    >Uner the law it would be quite easy to protect a customers info from the
    >likes of the government. COTSE keep their access logs for a week after
    >access, much too long for a privacy sevice.
    >
    >And you all make out COTSE's $6 a month as "super low", It's, measly $18
    >saving on Anonymizers service.
    >
    >Then again, the two services are for different types of users...IMO it's
    >hard to beat Anonymizer if you're looking for ACTUAL privacy from everyone
    >including Big Brother. BUt if you just want privacy to get away from freaks
    >and the like I would say COTSE is better...
    >
    >~Seb



    First, cotse's fee. Despite your whinging, you have admitted
    that cotse's fee is indeed lower.

    Second, cotse's services are better and more complete.

    Third, cotse's rep ("the currency of the realm" for
    security services based on trust) is higher.

    Fourth, cotse does not require you to use any special software,
    together with a large number of intellectual property enforcement
    provisions (incuding identity disclosure for alleged breaches of
    the licence agreement).

    Fifth, and most important, cotse does not make unrealistic and
    disingenous representations - as you do - that it can provide a
    shield for illegal acts (let's hope you are not a spokesman for
    anonymizer!) Cotse explains in clear and simple language the
    types and levels of protection it is designed to give
    (i.e., a privacy shield) and what it neither can nor is willing
    to protect (illegal acts and grossly abusive ones such as
    spamming).

    In fact, to anonymizer's credit and your discredit, anonymizer's
    User Agreement (section 7.3) explicitly prohibits illegal acts.
    And item 4 of section 8.3 provides that the supplier (i.e.,
    anonymizer) is not obliged to keep confidential any information
    that it is required by law to divulge (and in a number of other
    cases including spamming). Anonymizer states that it normally
    keeps logs only for 48 hours, but then goes on to add the proviso
    that it may keep them longer. (Anonymizer's User Agreement goes
    on for over 7 densely-worded pages. Not disqualifying by itself
    but rather worrisome in terms of simplicity and clarity.)

    The powers of the US government, if they are focussed, and if
    they want you bad enough, are enormous. Anyone who used
    *any* commercial service - and one based in the US at that! - to
    make, for example, death threats on the internet against GWB
    would be a fool of the first order.

    Anonymizer appears to provide a useful commercial privacy shield.
    However, to pretend that it could - or would - protect you from
    the consequences of your illegal acts and Big Brother is madness.

    Regards,
     
    nemo outis, Jun 27, 2003
    #8
  9. Anonymous

    Dave Korn Guest

    "Stephen K. Gielda" <> wrote in message
    news:...

    > > BUt if you just want privacy to get away from freaks
    > > and the like I would say COTSE is better...
    > >

    >
    > That's true, we aren't designed to give you anonymity from the US
    > government because we operate under their laws. However, I don't think
    > anonymizer can provide that either for much the same reasons. If you
    > need that kind of anonymity don't trust any single service, use the
    > remailers.
    >
    > /steve



    You could always run a mix-based web proxy like JAP, ya know... ever
    thought about it ? Best thing since freedom.net IMO.


    DaveK
    --
    moderator of
    alt.talk.rec.soc.biz.news.comp.humanities.meow.misc.moderated.meow
    Burn your ID card! http://www.optional-identity.org.uk/
    Help support the campaign, copy this into your .sig!
    Proud Member of the Exclusive "I have been plonked by Davee because he
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    and beyond the call of hilarity.
    PGP Key-ID: 0x0FB504D1 Fingerprint 04B7 2E8C 0245 680E 6484 C441 CEC7 D2BD
     
    Dave Korn, Jun 28, 2003
    #9
  10. Anonymous

    A Guest

    Re: COTSE? (off on a tangent ...)

    "LLFormat" <> wrote in message
    news:p...

    > Would encrypting emails attract 'unwanted' attention in the first place ?
    > As (hopefully) the encryption could not be broken, would the composer of
    > the mail in question face two or more years in the slammer for *not*
    > handing over the passphrase ?


    Yes, encrypted emails would attract attention. But, if you regularly
    receive encrypted email to the point that encrypted mail is normal for you,
    who would be able to determine which messages should be flagged for extra
    analysis?

    Keep in mind, too, that the laws governing Carnivore (well, at least
    pre-9/911) were such that Carnivore could only monitor email for specific
    individuals for which a warrant had been obtained. It's not like they hook
    it up to a server and monitor all email accounts. But, after 9/11, this
    may very well be the case.

    I don't think there is a crime against handing over your passphrase. A 5th
    Amendment (United States) right against self-incrimination may be
    sufficient. If the court orders one to hand over the passphrase and that
    person refuses, they most likely would be held in contempt and could be
    incarcerated for some time. However, if the PGP key expires during that
    time or if the information is no longer relevant after a certain period of
    time...

    Has anyone tried overcoming key expiration by using a backup of the key on
    a machine with its clock set to an earlier time?


    > 1) Most people I communicate with using email, would most likely think that
    > PGP is a new brand of tea.


    Yes, we all have that problem. If more people used PGP for the majority of
    their email communication, it would improve security and make traffic
    analysis extremely difficult.

    > 2) Or those with slightly longer experience with computers would say;
    > "Why would you want to encrypt emails ? What are you hiding ?"


    That's a common argument but it reflects a very simple-minded view of the
    world. It's also not a logical argument, but who cares, right? What
    people don't realize is that they would never send half the email they send
    out through the regular mail on postcards. Encryption is the equivalent of
    a very good envelope.

    Everyone has something to hide. Not every secret is criminal; privacy is a
    form of secrecy. My bank and credit card information is private. So are
    my feelings toward some of my neighbors. I'm definitely not going to
    slander my boss in company email without encryption.
     
    A, Jun 30, 2003
    #10
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