Torrent Blocking – WHAT you need to know?
Torrent technology has been developed to enable direct file sharing between individuals, also known as Peer-to-Peer (P2P) file sharing.
Because torrents rely on a private network of directly connected computers, it has become the most popular method of sharing music, movies and software – much to the dislike of authorities which govern copyright laws.
What is a torrent?
In layman’s terms, a torrent is a computer file which contains information about “the location” of a particular file on the network of privately connected computers. This file is then used as a sign-post for the application being used to download the appropriate file.
On receiving a torrent file, a computer knows exactly which computer it needs to connect to and where within this the file to be downloaded resides.
What are the risks of a torrent?
Due to the direct nature of torrent connected computers, there is little responsibility or liability on the accuracy and quality of the files available for download, so the risk of files not being a true representation of their content is extremely high.
Needless to say, because of this risk, anyone downloading a file through a Torrent connection is highly exposed to the files, at best, being different content to what was originally expected, or in some extreme cases, containing files which may in fact be harmful/compromising to your computer or local network.
What should I do to prevent torrents?
The best way to mitigate any potential risks from files containing harmful content, would be to not use this technology at all. The perceived benefits of using this technology however, is often extremely tempting (free software, free movies, free music, etc) turning this into the proverbial “light to the moth”.
Weighing out these perceived benefits against the potential risks, particularly for a business, means that an appropriate level of protection may be required. Fortunately, there are a number of ways you can achieve this with the LucidView Enforcer:
- Through your user level settings
- Through your browser settings
- Through your network firewall
- Through your monitoring software
- Through your dedicated hardware equipment