My Tor browser is recently blocked by Charter.
With the change of administration, the uproar about Net Neutrality started. New Trump’s appointee to FCC started his crusade against Free internet. So, I installed Tor browser on my computer, because I think that if I pay for service, a company should not collect my data as well.
A few days ago, my Tor browser could not connect anymore to the internet. At first, I thought it is a just consequence of living in rural area. Where weather and careless drivers often knock off the internet. But other devices and browsers had access.
So I had to change my Tor settings and use a bridge to connect to the internet.
In the USA, there should not be any restrictions on the free speech and access to information. But, a simple act of protesting double paying to the internet provider motivated Charter to block Tor. A browser USA armed forces developed to ensure safe communications.
I use Tor because I feel internet providers are stealing from us. We have to pay them twice, through regular fees and through the money they earn by selling data they collect about us. And that second payment, through data, well I did not agree to. They actually never asked me. So I use Tor, eliminating the data collection of the browser history by my internet provider.
I do not have anything to hide. I do not do anything illegal. I do give my real google email as login as before, I do not hide the location when a site asks for it. But, Charter does not see the site I visit, only the IP address of the bridge through which I connect. This means that my data are available to any other company that provides services for free–using data they collect from me as payment. With that approach, I do not have a problem. After all, I pay only once.
Moreover, In hacker community, Tor is not, anymore, considered as super safe. According to the rumors there, NSA broke Tor with the help of Carnegie University, some time ago. So people who do illegal stuff do not use Tor anymore, the risk is too big for them. Meaning, the Tor browser is perfect as a protest tool against the greedy internet providers. Law enforcement can tap into it if they need to crack some crime, but companies cannot. NSA does not share their tools with them.
So I will continue to use Tor. Especially now, when I had to adjust settings to the option used in restrictive regimes around the world. And this last point, me having to use settings developed for the regimes who do not allow freedom of speech disgusts me. I’m disgusted by the fact that my internet provider, Charter, blocked the use of Tor, out of pure greed.