• Sweden edition
 
Study: more Swedes surf the net anonymously

Study: more Swedes surf the net anonymously

Published: 01 May 2012 15:05 GMT+02:00
Updated: 01 May 2012 15:05 GMT+02:00

Some 700,000 Swedes currently actively seek to hide their identity online by making use of anonymizer services, according to the survey by the Cybernorms project at Lund University.

The survey shows that around 200,000 Swedes aged 15-25-years-old habitually surf anonymously, making use of proxy services such as Relakks, Ipredator and Mullvad - this equates to 15 percent of the age group.

The researchers conclude that as internet usage and file-sharing is most common among younger Swedes, then the proportion of older users surfing anonymously is likely to be lower.

"We can't say for certain for other age groups, but a rough estimate, based on the recognition that other age groups don't share files illegally to the same extent, is that around 700,000 Swedes are currently paying for a service to conceal their identity on the internet," said Måns Svensson, PhD in sociology of law and the survey's project manager.

The figures came as a surprise however as a prior survey on the issue by the Swedish Post and Telecom Authority (PTS) showed little change since 2009.

The European Court of Justice furthermore indicated recently that the controversial anti-file sharing IPRED law (named after the EU intellectual property rights directive) could be brought into force in Sweden.

The law allows for copyright holder organizations to obtain the identity of suspected file sharers from internet service providers, suggesting that the demand for anonymization services will increase.

"If the European Court's opinion leads to an intensified hunt for file-sharers, the indication is that the use of these types of anonymity services will expand even faster," Smith said.

The Lund University researchers concluded that file-sharing is the single most important factor in the growth in demand for online anonymity, but it has also been found to be expanding among other internet users.

Danny Aerts, president of the .se foundation which administers Swedish network addresses, estimates that the increasing level of surveillance on the internet is instrumental in the increasing popularity of anonymizing services.

"As surveillance increases, both from the government and from private actors such as Facebook and Google, so does demand (for anonymization services)," Aerts said.

"But I think it's good that anonymization services are available. Take the Arab Spring for example; then everyone in Sweden considers it a good idea that anonymity is possible. And it would be strange if that did not also apply at home."

TT/The Local/pvs (news@thelocal.se)

Your comments about this article

17:52 May 1, 2012 by muscle
you can not stop filer sharing by strict laws. People will always ...ALWAYS find workarounds with such prohibitions. Take the example of Spotify, by charging small amount of monthly free, you get the music you need. If such services can be provided for movies and other software, may be it will work.
20:52 May 1, 2012 by gpafledthis
jeez !! american here - hey sweedie state !! You can rendition me back anytime you wish - BUT - promise to put me in one of your prisons !! Big Bad Swede State !! Police ought to run a "sting" create a false flag travel agency and offer free trip to Texas & Arizona to their "chosen people" !! Here we treat big mouths-bitc--rs-and various malcontents proper good !!
07:51 May 2, 2012 by Valdemaratterdag
Here's the important info from Relakks' own website:

"De uppgifter som svenska myndigheter kan begära förutom abonnentuppgifter(se ovan) är så kallade trafikuppgifter.

Dessa är omgivna av ett mycket starkare legalt skydd. För att bryta sekretessen för trafikuppgift måste brottet vara föreskrivet ett straff om minst två år i fängelse."

Translated:

"The data Swedish authorities may require addition of subscriber data (see above) is known as traffic data.

These are surrounded by a much stronger legal protection. In order to break the confidentiality of traffic data should the crime be prescribed a punishment of at least two years in prison."

In other words, you had better be sure that the nefarious deeds which you are in the process of committing constitute crimes less than two years in prison. Good luck.
Today's headlines
Business
Sweden’s growth 'better than expected'
Strong household consumption is helping Sweden's growth. Photo: Mona-Lisa Djerf/SvD/TT

Sweden’s growth 'better than expected'

Sweden’s gross domestic product grew 2.6 percent in the second quarter of 2014 compared to the same period a year earlier, with the economy performing much better than previously thought. READ  

Presented by West Sweden
West Sweden prepares for lobster premiere
Sweden's lobster season starts on Monday. Photo: Jonas Ingman

West Sweden prepares for lobster premiere

It's almost time to catch your own dinner off the west coast of Sweden. The lobster season gets underway on Monday, with fishermen and tourists taking to the seas in the hope of stocking up on the traditional Swedish delicacy. READ  

National
Gas leak leaves Sony staff in Sweden hospital

Gas leak leaves Sony staff in Sweden hospital

An Ozone gas leak at Sony Mobile's offices in Lund has put eight people in hospital, with nine others needing to be checked by doctors. READ  

Elections 2014
Social Democrats get permission to govern
Stefan Löfven is set to become Prime Minister. Photo: TT

Social Democrats get permission to govern

Sweden's parliamentary speaker has given Social Democrat leader Stefan Löfven the all-clear to form a government. On Friday Löfven is expected to meet the heads of the Liberal and Centre parties. READ  

Elections 2014
Vote quirk gives Sweden Democrats extra seats
Sweden Democrat leader Jimmie Åkesson celebrates his party's election success. Photo: Lars Pehrson/SvD/TT

Vote quirk gives Sweden Democrats extra seats

The Sweden Democrats, who became the third largest party in Sunday's election, have learned they will get two more seats than expected due to a quirk in the country's election system. READ  

Tech
Ericsson to axe modems and cut jobs
Ericsson CEO Hans Vestberg, pictured here presenting the comapny's quarterly report in July. Photo: Annika af Klercker/TT

Ericsson to axe modems and cut jobs

Swedish telecom giant Ericsson has confirmed it will cut jobs in Sweden and abroad after the company announced on Thursday morning it would stop developing modems. READ  

Elections 2014
Centre party laughs off Löfven's advances
Annie Lööf speaks after her meeting with parliament's speaker on Wednesday. Photo: Fredrik Persson/TT

Centre party laughs off Löfven's advances

UPDATED: Centre Party leader Annie Lööf has reiterated her reluctance to cooperate across bloc lines with Social Democrat leader Stefan Löfven, as he renews his attempts to form a fresh government. READ  

Elections 2014
Sweden Democrats want prized speaker job
Sweden Democrat party secretary Björn Söder celebrates Sunday's election result. Photo: Anders Wiklund/TT

Sweden Democrats want prized speaker job

UPDATED: As Sweden’s third largest party, the Sweden Democrats "assume" they will be given one of a handful of prestigious parliamentary speaker jobs, party secretary Björn Söder tells The Local. READ  

National
Teens in intensive care after school 'initiation'
Photo: Peder Skrivares school

Teens in intensive care after school 'initiation'

School inspectors are investigating after an initiation ceremony at a high school in Varberg in south west Sweden left four girls in hospital. READ  

National
Pirate Bay Swede 'mistreated' in jail
Peter Sunde. Photo: TT

Pirate Bay Swede 'mistreated' in jail

The brother of Pirate Bay co-founder Peter Sunde has questioned the conditions of his brother's Swedish jail, slamming both the institution and the guards. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Society
What's on in Sweden
Politics
How Sweden Democrats went mainstream
Politics
Scandinavia and Scotland: closer links?
Gallery
Property of the week - Eskilstuna
Sponsored Article
How to start a business in Stockholm
Blog updates

17 September

Deep election analysis (Blogweiser) »

"You think you’re bad? Well I’m American. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NFbomLID0vU Deep deep analysis on Swedish election results. Vlog post: https://t.co/tjQgfa5Yie #svpol #val2014 #politics pic.twitter.com/oEK5ADFT8L — Joel Sherwood (@joeldsherwood) September 17, 2014 " READ »

 

15 September

Liten, litet, små & lilla (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej igen! Have you ever been confused about when to use “liten”, “litet”, “små” and “lilla”? Today I’m going to sort out how use the adjective “liten” (small) and the different forms of it. Liten or litet? “Liten” is the form we will use when referring to a noun with the gender “en”. For example: Min pappa har en..." READ »

 
 
 
Society
How I became a surf blogger when I moved to Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: September 13th
Society
Why is Stockholm's Södermalm so cool?
Gallery
People-watching: September 11th
Gallery
People-watching: September 13th
Politics
Five possible election outcomes
Politics
Sweden elections: How do they work?
Politics
Sweden elections: Who's who?
Lifestyle
What's on in Sweden
Gallery
Property of the week - Hornstull, Stockholm
Analysis
Five differences between the UK and Sweden
Welshman Jonny Luck is now a chef in Sweden
Society
How I opened my own restaurant in Sweden's Malmö
Sponsored Article
Stockholm tech fest: relive the magic
Gallery
People-watching September 8th
Photo: TT
Politics
Feminists fight for first seats
Politics
Immigration cut push from Sweden Democrats
Sheryl Sandberg says women have "low expectations"
Tech
Facebook exec talks women's limits in Swedish business
Politics
Left Party calls for justice and equality
Politics
Green Party wants 'better world' for kids
Lifestyle
The five best Swedish songs of the month
Sponsored Article
Introducing… Insurance in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Graduates: Insure your income in Sweden with AEA
Sponsored Article
Introducing...Your finances in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Introducing...Housing in Stockholm
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

863
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se
If you want to drink, that’s your business.
If you want to stop, we can help.

Learn more about English-language Alcoholics Anonymous in Sweden. No dues. No fees. Confidentiality assured.
AA-EUROPE.ORG/SWEDEN