Who uses Tor?

It’s from a few years ago, but this article about Tor users is really interesting. It gives a bit of an insight into the wide range of use cases!

To give one example for how the Tor network can make law enforcement easier,

Tor allows officials to surf questionable web sites and services without leaving tell-tale tracks. If the system administrator of an illegal gambling site, for example, were to see multiple connections from government or law enforcement IP addresses in usage logs, investigations may be hampered.

I’m sure that (particularly government agencies) are capable of finding their own solutions, but it’s interesting to think about how systems like onion routing can have more than one advantage: actually standing to benefit more than just civilian’s rights. :thinking:

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This is absolutely true. There are countless usecases for Tor for people from all walks of life. This is why I believe it is one of the most important projects right now.

On your point about law enforcement potentially having a legit reason to use Tor professionally: this is probably more widespread than we realize.

Anonymity benefits everyone, and in Tor’s case, it requires a large amount of people with various different interests/goals to use it. There’s power in numbers, and in variety.

This is why the US government partially funds the project; in many ways, they need it as much as we do.

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Yes, the government funds Tor. They have also been using it to conduct covert operations to avoid detection. If they are still using it, then it’s a good bet they have a vested interest in seeing it grow. While they wish to have more control of it, they would have to do a lot more than control some exit and guard nodes. New nodes being created constantly, better protocol security and other factors make it increasingly more difficult to control it—they know its benefits far outweigh the cons.

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Tor is a wonderful project and everyone has different use cases to use tor. I use it for finding news or databreaches to download, collect, and read-only. That is legal, but for might download and post it to the public again which is illegal. But that’s just one use case, some use tor for everyday use even though it’s slow. Or some just use it because they have too due to country censorship or hide from their ISP

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