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Torrents

Computer forensics discussion. Please ensure that your post is not better suited to one of the forums below (if it is, please post it there instead!)
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Torrents

Post Posted: Sun Sep 16, 2018 2:58 am

I'm not very familiar with torrents so excuse my naiveté.

My understanding is there is a torrent file which then connects to download the file you want. Then even after you delete the thing from the bit torrent client then the torrent file is still in some other file on the computer?

Is the presence of that torrent file also used for distribution? So if the data it relates to is child abuse images but there's no trace of child abuse images on the computer, can the presence of that torrent file support a charge of distributing?  

wotsits
Senior Member
 
 
  

Re: Torrents

Post Posted: Sun Sep 16, 2018 3:51 am

- wotsits
My understanding is there is a torrent file which then connects to download the file you want. Then even after you delete the thing from the bit torrent client then the torrent file is still in some other file on the computer?


A torrent file documents the data, and usually also says what systems keep track of what other hosts (seeds) offer it for download.

It's a separate entity, yes. Whether or not deleting the data also deletes the torrent depends on client configuration. Many, possibly most, clients keep them separate by default, but it's not a requirement. Many allow the user to decide.

(If it's found in a default directory or one of the directories a user can configure -- e.g. 'store .torrents in' or 'move .torrents for finished jobs to' or 'automatically load .torrents from'-- it makes it more likely that it is part of a torrent setup. If it's found anywhere else ... not so much. Such settings may also tell you where downloaded files may have ended up.)

Is the presence of that torrent file also used for distribution?


No. If you do distribute, you very probably have the original torrent file around, or your torrent client has the equivalent information in an internal database. But you may have that file also without distributing or even without downloading. (I have torrents in 'My Downloads' just because I clicked on a link I didn't realise was a torrent link, and got it downloaded.)

So if the data it relates to is child abuse images but there's no trace of child abuse images on the computer, can the presence of that torrent file support a charge of distributing?


No, I wouldn't think so. You'd need additional stuff: torrent client configured to seed that particular torrent, and substantial download from the presumed seed system to someone elses system. And probably also a full download from somewhere.

Many torrent clients do distribute downloaded stuff automatically. That is, if you're downloading, you may also be distributing; that's the basic idea of torrents, after all. But again, configuration and network set up may prevent that from actually happening. (Example: with a non-uPnP router that the client can't reconfigure to open torrent-related ports, distribution often needs manual reconfiguration to work.)  

athulin
Senior Member
 
 
  

Re: Torrents

Post Posted: Sun Sep 16, 2018 12:44 pm

On some clients, when you download, you also send and share to others. A guy was convicted in Sweden for sharing of movies like this back in 2012, he thought he was safe when he throttled down the outflow. Something that the court didn't agree with.

So - yes, depending on the client you are using you could in fact helping to spreading material.

www.expressen.se/nyhet...ildelning/

(Use translate.google.com to translate from Swedish to English, paste the link and click translate)  

MDCR
Senior Member
 
 
  

Re: Torrents

Post Posted: Thu Sep 20, 2018 8:37 am

- MDCR
On some clients, when you download, you also send and share to others. A guy was convicted in Sweden for sharing of movies like this back in 2012, he thought he was safe when he throttled down the outflow. Something that the court didn't agree with.

So - yes, depending on the client you are using you could in fact helping to spreading material.

www.expressen.se/nyhet...ildelning/

(Use translate.google.com to translate from Swedish to English, paste the link and click translate)



This was my understanding. Hence the presence of say uTorrent could justify a distributing offense.  

wotsits
Senior Member
 
 

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