FBI Can Obtain A Warrant If You Run Tor Come December

Plenty of Bitcoin users use Tor to access the Internet and the deep web. Up until now there was nothing particularly wrong with that, but a new ruling may change that scenario altogether. If this ruling is to be approved, any federal magistrate judge can issue a search and seizure warrant for anyone who uses Tor or similar software to remain anonymous on the Internet.

Using Tor Might Become “Illegal.”

TheMerkle_Tor FBI Anonymity

Many consumers will argue that someone who has nothing to hide would have no need for anonymous software solutions such as Tor. However, given the limited number of privacy-centric options to browse the World Wide Web, Tor and consorts are becoming more and more popular every month.

Unfortunately that success has not gone by unnoticed, as the US Supreme Court has approved a rule change that will shake things up like never before. By granting every federal magistrate judge the right to issue a warrant for anyone using Tor, anonymity on the Internet may become a serious offense. Moreover, if the US Congress does not undertake action to fight this ruling, it will go into effect as soon as December 2016.

As a result, the FBI can then legally search computers running Tor remotely, even if they have no idea where the machine is located or what it is being used for. Simply having anonymity software installed on a computer would be reason enough for the FBI to investigate that user to “combat cyber crime.”

This ruling approval comes on the heels of media headlines detailing how over 1 million consumers use Tor to access Facebook. For every single illegal use case for anonymity software, there are hundreds, if not thousands legal ones. If this ruling gets approved, many innocent users will be spied upon by the FBI for no reason whatsoever.

Moreover, this would allow the FBI to spy on Bitcoin users all over the world if they use Tor software to anonymize their wallets as well. Ever since the shutdown of Silk Road, law enforcement agencies have been looking at ways to track Bitcoin users’ identities on the dark web. While nothing has been set in stone yet, this ruling is a grave concern for privacy in the US and beyond.

Source: The Last American Vagabond

Images credit 1,2

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