Tor Browser – A Brief Overview
The Tor Internet Browser is an Internet browsing application that uses The Onion Router (Tor) network that consists of a number of computer servers that move data from one to the next, making it difficult to identify the source of that data and trace it.
‘Tor’ is also a name given the the Tor Internet Browsing software used to access the Tor Server and this is based upon an altered version of the Mozilla Firefox Internet browser, version 60.6.1.
Why is TOR Browser Often Encountered in Illegal Image Cases
The Tor Internet browsing software provides the user with anonymous Internet access as, due to the use of various different servers in ‘hops’, it prevents the IP address of the user from being identified.
In addition to this, where standard Internet browsing applications, such as Internet Explorer, Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox, normally retain Internet browsing history and temporary cache files, the Tor Internet Browser software does not retain any such records which makes identifying the activity conducted by the user more difficult.
Whether the Tor Internet Browser software was involved in the case or not, Tor is often encountered when dealing with cases involving criminal evidence as the use of it is often considered as part of the standard examination of computers by Police and the mere presence of it on the computer is used to raise suspicion within a Prosecution case.
The use of Tor Internet Browser can mean that, in some instances, those who had frequently accessed unlawful images may be assisted as the evidence to prove it is more hidden on their computer.
However, in contrast, those who seek to prove legitimate Internet browsing may also have difficulties if they had used the Tor Internet browsing software, for example, where there are low numbers of unlawful images created on a small number of occasions a defence for the individual may be supported by the Internet activity, however, the absence of it may infringe the identification of evidence to assist.
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