Category: filtering

Type of Filtering and Ninja Bypassing

Internet filtering used to be relatively scarce but it’s extremely common now and takes a variety of forms.  The two most basic forms are URL and content filtering .

URL Filtering

Typical examples of URL filtering is where the requested URL of a web site is intercepted by the proxy or firewall and compared to a big list of ‘bad urls’.  If the URLs match then the request is denied and blocked.  In  this case the user is normally redirected to an error page, although in some cases the request will be logged and an administrator alerted.   It’s not a great system as if you have an extensive list of URLs it can have a big performance impact – and remember this impact is for all requests even those that don’t contain a blocked site.

In recent years some performance improvements have been made to alleviate the issues.  For instance some URL filtering systems use hash values of the URLs rather than the addresses themselves.  The hash values can be ordered so that the system can locate information faster (by jumping to specific points in the list rather than searching from start to finish).   Most systems you’ll find in corporate environments will use URL filtering to some extent.

There can be lots of other problems with filtering simply based on a list especially if you use the hash value searching system.  The URLs have to complete and only that exact, specific address is restricted.   Many websites have multiple domain names and aliases so any list has to have all these URLs listed too.

Content Filtering

Just like URL filtering has a noticeable impact on performance, the same can be said of content filtering.   Content filters look inside the data being transmitted – their goal is not only to block access to inappropriate sites but also to check for security risks.  A content filtering system will often be set to filter out specific objects like Java or ActiveX.   They also check for viruses and other security problems entering the network.

These filtering systems are very sophisticated – analysing the actual packet data though is bound to have an impact on any networks performance.  Content filters will usually defeat the use of anonymous proxies as the end URL is irrelevant – the data itself is being scanned which will reveal both the proxy address and the destination URL.   An example of one of the most widely used content filters is WebSense – which uses a variety of plug ins and runs on dedicated hardware strategically placed with a tap into all network traffic.

Ninja Bypassing of Filtering Systems

To defeat the URL filtering system is normally fairly straight forward, most anonymous ninja proxy servers available on the internet will suffice.  The only difficulty is that most URL lists contain a large selection of these sites – so if the one you use is on the list you’re going to get blocked.   Not only that but the administrator will likely be informed that someone is deliberately trying to bypass corporate restrictions.  If you set up your own using a hosting account and a Glype installation then you’ll likely be able to surf under the radar.

Unfortunately the mass majority of filtering devices now use both URL and Content filtering technology. The normal web proxy sites you’ll see on the internet promising you complete anonymity and the ability to bypass filters are completely useless. The content filter will look into the packet itself – the fact you are using a proxy and a fake ip are irrelevant.

There is only one effective way to defeat a genuine content filter and that is to encrypt your surfing. In this case the URLs and sites you are visiting are unable to be read by the content filters.

The Need For a Ninja Proxy

Protecting yourself online has never been so important.  The need to use common sense and adequate security and privacy tools is vital. If you’ve come here looking to become an online proxy ninja, surfing securely through the electronic ether well perhaps I can point you in the right proxy But First the Danger finding any sort of anonymity is difficult online, you’re tracked and logged through your ISP, company firewalls, every web sites you visit and a thousand other devices in between. Your IP address can be tracked back to the very PC you’re sitting at and the logs stored and backed up in your ISP contain virtually everything you’ve done online for the last two years. When I say everything, I’m not kidding – and yes it does include the fact that you watched the Kylie Minogue Agent Provocateur advert 6 times in a row last Friday when you came home from the bar.

Now the inconvenience Sometimes it’s not actually the paranoia (oh and yes they are watching you), but the inconvenience that drives people to hopeless proxy sites in search of a Ninja proxy to surf through.  This is down to the increasing pervasiveness of a system called geotargeting – I’ll add a better description of this but it’s basically the way that websites restrict what you can watch depending on your location. You’ve probably seen it in action –

  • Want to watch BBC Iplayer but are not in UK – Sorry blocked by IP address
  • Catch up on some shows on Hulu while on holiday in France – Nope blocked by IP address
  • View the news on ABC whilst in Canada – Nope blocked by IP address again.

The real list is much, much longer – anything from accessing YouTube to just about any big media site.  More so if you’re unlucky to live in a country where it’s considered bad for you to access Facebook  – it’s likely you’re going to get blocked for not having the right IP address. So people are fed up with being blocked, monitored, logged and basically having their online experience controlled and analysed.  So they look online and find details of unblock sites and read blog posts looking for a free proxy server. They then find they don’t work and indeed haven’t for many years at least for most applications.

There’s no point looking on a free proxy list you simply won’t find anything that works anymore and you certainly won’t find a proper ninja proxy which unlocks the internet and hides your location.   What they find is loads of web pages called Ninja something or other and a basic install of a web proxy called Glype.  They will promise you all sorts of super, secret ninja surfing via their little browsing frame – but I’m afraid it’s not true.

Computer Admin Watching Someone Search Through a Ninja Proxy Site

The Truth About Ninja Proxies Unfortunately that’s what the majority end up doing, searching in Google and finding some Ninja web site or something like that.  In the middle of the page their will be a little box inviting you to search via their site – something like this

Not Really Ninja At All! In fact little more than a default Glype installation with a proxy browser front end.

Is it secure ? In a word – No. Well if you trust a complete stranger who has set up a free server, installed Glype and covered it in ads – to look after your data then of course it’s fine. It doesn’t bypass most firewalls, it certainly doesn’t give you anonymity – it does add many more risks to your browsing. For those of us who prefer reality it’s a complete waste of time, all you are doing is funneling your data through another unknown, insecure point.  In some circumstance the setup may obscure your IP address slightly but that’s about it – you also be leaving yet another log of your activities on this guys server. Don’t think you’ll be able to stream previously blocked video either like BBC Iplayer or Hulu because you can’t watch these through a little Iframe window and besides the servers are normally basic ones that would struggle to stream video to one person not the thousands who’ll probably be trying.

The real proxy ninja experience will obscure your IP address completely through an advanced network of high speed, highly secure servers across the planet.   It will be high speed and high performance allowing media streaming direct to your PC from wherever you are – so watch the BBC Iplayer or Hulu or any site you care to try.

It can also be set to automatically switch your browsing data across to a different server across the globe every few minutes. But finally it will also encrypt your data meaning that you really can be anonymous, your ISP logs included.  In fact  the only readable logs of your online existence are briefly on the secure servers and are deleted immediately.

To access a global network of secure proxies and VPNs, which can bypass internet blocks and keep you anonymous – just try ..