There is a long running debate over whether private torrent sites are ‘safer’ in respect of being monitored by anti-piracy companies.
Very generally, users of public trackers are the “low-hanging fruit”, easy pickings for anti-piracy companies who want to track large numbers of users with the least complication possible.
There are, however, millions of people using these sites and many of them feel this provides safety-in-numbers.
Conversely, users of private torrent sites will argue that they are safer, since it’s not only harder for anti-piracy companies to get in but there will be less users to monitor when they do.
However, if anti-piracy companies do step in (such as they have in several porn piracy pay-up-or-else cases in the United States) these sites can prove easier to gather evidence from, not least because of their more community-driven experience.
It’s a debate that will run and run. And run.
That said, over in France users are finding that private sites are being monitored as part of the country’s HADOPI anti-piracy initiative.
“Since the beginning of the HADOPI campaign, we have had many testimonials from users who received e-mails or letters from the High Authority even they only used this type of tracker to download protected content,” writes French language site Undernews.fr.
“It proves that no one is safe on the trackers without the use of advanced means of anonymity, such as offshore VPNs for example.”