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hydrotux

Understanding geolocation and a couple other questions around AirVPN

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HI folks,

 

I only came across AirVPN over the last 48 hrs and having read a bit onthe forum and the intro/about pages on the main website, I'm cheered about the ethics that drove the founders of this service and the motivation (privacy, etc) that still drives this service. The fact that there is this brilliant forum for the community to share and that there is even a discussion to compare against the competitors is a huge merit. being able to measure performance oft he service is another great feature that few VPN providers have. So, a lot of brownie points to the people that make this possible! The fact that I'm allowed to post on this forum and not actually be a beneficiary of AirVPN VPN services (at least not yet .... although I would be happy to pay a little amount just to access these forums and there is a huge amount of great content for configuring pfSense ...) is a great sign of the open approach used by this community.

 

All that said, I have a couple of questions that I thought sit in the General forum:

 

Question 1: I'm still not clear how geolocation works with AirVPN. How is it that I do not need to connect to an Italian server to see italian TV withouth being denied the service i.e. RAI is quite good at cathing out people connecting from abroad? If you have DNS leaks your quite likely to be restricted to viewing. I've ended up on a couple of VPN providers that were blacklisted. I'm sure there is a post on this forum that explains it quite well ... I just couldn't find it.

 

QUestion 2: What of the main agrguments for VPNs is that if their jurisdiciton is on an offshore island, they better protect their users from juriditions in the western world, typically falling in the 5 eyes, etc. Italy falls in the 14 eyes ... isn't this a potential threat for AirVPN users? What measures are in place to fully protect users against this type of threat?

 

Many thanks

 

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Question 1: I'm still not clear how geolocation works with AirVPN. How is it that I do not need to connect to an Italian server to see italian TV withouth being denied the service i.e. RAI is quite good at cathing out people connecting from abroad? If you have DNS leaks your quite likely to be restricted to viewing. I've ended up on a couple of VPN providers that were blacklisted. I'm sure there is a post on this forum that explains it quite well ... I just couldn't find it.

 

If you query Air's DNS servers and you view certain websites, your connection is redirected through a rerouting server. A list of these rerouting servers is at the bottom of the Status page. So I connect to Kitalpha in CH and want to view the german ARD stream of the FIFA World Cup for some crazy reason. General connection would be

ME <> Kitalpha <> ARD

ARD logs a connetion from Kitalpha which is in Switzerland. ARD only permits viewing it from Germany. Geoblock. That's what we call it. Geolocation is something different.

This rerouting makes supporting websites do something like this, but only if AirVPN knows you are heading there, therefore, the DNS query must go to Air's DNS on 10.xxx.0.1 (leaks should therefore be prevented):

ME <> Kitalpha <> DE <> ARD

ARD logs a connection from DE which is in Germany. Geoblock circumvented, have fun watching men cry on every touch.

QUestion 2: What of the main agrguments for VPNs is that if their jurisdiciton is on an offshore island, they better protect their users from juriditions in the western world, typically falling in the 5 eyes, etc. Italy falls in the 14 eyes ... isn't this a potential threat for AirVPN users? What measures are in place to fully protect users against this type of threat?

 

There is a very good portion of paranoia in the terms 14-eyes country and 5-eyes country. No one really knows what these mean, what kind of a threat they stand for. They just pop up when it comes to discussing anonymity.

Be aware that VPNs are pseudonymous connections. They create loud noises in networks, making them neither untraceable nor indisruptable. It's a tech to securely connect two endpoints, such as your home and your company. Pretty much everyone between you and AirVPN knows of this connection if someone bothers to dig a little deeper. He/she only have difficulty in seeing the contents of the tunnel.

Problem is the same as with good old mail encryption. It will encrypt the contents but I'm more interested whether you contacted breivik.a@naziparty.no sometime, anyway. Or whether you have a certain number belonging to Said or Cherif Kouachi in your WhatsApp contact history (unlikely, but in principle...)

 

Because the really interesting shit is never encrypted. This is what your paranoia should be directed at if you insist on it.


Four simple things:
There's a guide to AirVPN. Before you ask questions, take 30 minutes of your time to go through it.

Amazon IPs are not dangerous here. It's the fallback DNS.
Running TOR exits is discouraged. They're subject to restrictions on the internet and harm all AirVPN users.

Furthermore, I propose that your paranoia is to be destroyed. If you overdo privacy, you'll be unique among the mass again.

 

XMPP: gigan3rd@xmpp.airvpn.org or join our lounge@conference.xmpp.airvpn.org

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Hi,

I have finally managed to configure my pfSense 2.4 machine to use AirVPN. Really happy. Of course the VPN knocks my max speed down, but that is expected. Yet, connection stable so far and enjoying some peace of mind. Ipleak is not detecting any leaks (using unbound forwarder on the pfSense machine) whcih is also very good.

However, when I click on the "Geolocation" button from my laptop, it eventually tracks me down to the town of connection. This doesn't happen using the same browser on my desktop. How on earth is this possible if I'm not leaking anything? Its seems to be related to the browser but how does the browser know where i'm connecting from .... ? Is this something to do ith the WiFi? Very concerning .... Using the latest version of Firefox. Of course, the Tor browser does not do the same and when clicking the Goelocation button on the Ipleak page.

Thanks
 

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Cool, some interesting reading. What I don't understand is how the hell a browser can tell were I'm connecting from even though I use a VPN and I don't have DNS leaks. I found this: https://bestvpn.org/html5demos/geo/
It can't get the location from my Firefox browser on my desktop: phew!! Now I need to work out how to harden my laptop a bit. This explains things a bit and may explain why geolocation is working on my laptop and not on my desktop even though both are going through the same router/VPN: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/W3C_Geolocation_API#How_does_Geolocation_work.3F

As suspected, must be the wifi. Very concerning that it has become so difficult to remain anonymous. This should be a right, not a privilege of a few patient people that are keen to understand the problem and find a solution.

Thanks for your responses.

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Right, so now that I have it all nicely setup, I'm trying to see if I can view the Italian TV channels. I'm connected via a Swedish server and definitely no dns leak. When I try to connect to https://www.mediasetplay.mediaset.it/It identifies me connecting as not from Italy. Geolocation is set off in my Firfox browser. I'm wondering if this is the problem?

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On 11/25/2019 at 9:55 PM, hydrotux said:

Right, so now that I have it all nicely setup, I'm trying to see if I can view the Italian TV channels. I'm connected via a Swedish server and definitely no dns leak. When I try to connect to https://www.mediasetplay.mediaset.it/It identifies me connecting as not from Italy. Geolocation is set off in my Firfox browser. I'm wondering if this is the problem?

Works for me connecting from Sweden with Firefox and geolocation turned off.

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