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Taking some measures to pre-vanish can be very helpful to vanish at a later date. This means having in place the tools that you need to vanish long before you actually need to use them. This can be particularly helpful if you will be spending some time in the near future in a repressive regime that does not recognize the basic human rights of freedom of speech, freedom of association, and privacy related rights. Once domiciled inside a controlling regime, it can become more difficult to acquire the knowledge and skills needed to live a private life. You may no longer be able to purchase How To Vanish The Book directly, but it can be done. You may also need to seek other jurisdictions to maintain your bank privacy.
How Cubans Use Anonymous Web Surfing
Communist Cuba is a great example of how this is being done. It has a thriving market for goods and services, even though strict regulations prohibit entrepreneurship, because the citizens find ways to exercise their enterprising minds. A site similar to Craigslist, called revolico.com, allows Cubans to exchange everything from baseball equipment to their place in line and they love their hawaladar. For the good of the people, the site is blocked by the government. But the site thrives nonetheless. How do the Cubans get around the repressive and immoral policies of their overbearing government? They use anonymous web surfing practices.
Anonymous web surfing is generally done by using proxy servers. Proxy servers allow the proxy computer, outside of Cuba and not subject to Cuban government regulations, to do the web surfing for the Cubans. The ISP registers that they have visited the proxy server, not the sites visited by the proxy server on their behalf. And, because there are many thousands of servers available at any moment, some of which have never been used before as a proxy, it is far more difficult to restrict access to proxy servers than to individual websites. This way, the web surfing activity of individual Cubans is made anonymous to those who are watching them.
Cubans using anonymous proxy servers for anonymous browsing which dont disclose their IP address to the websites that they visit, nor the fact that the proxy server is even surfing for someone else, make it that much harder for a repressive government, like Cuba, to discover which citizens are visiting a site and then prevent them from visiting the site.
Cuba is not the only example. China, Iran, and many other countries have seen their citizens utilize proxy servers to spread information and ideas. I am sure that governments are not done trying to prevent their citizens from accessing information, sharing information, or associating with others through the internet, but I am also sure that there will always be those who circumvent limitations placed on them through the use of anonymous web surfing techniques. Some people might want to seek residency in another country that is more free and allows for more privacy.
Reprinted with permission from How to Vanish.
Bill Rounds, J.D. is a California attorney. He holds a degree in Accounting from the University of Utah and a law degree from California Western School of Law. He practices civil litigation, domestic and foreign business entity formation and transactions, criminal defense and privacy law. He is a strong advocate of personal and financial freedom and civil liberties.