Creating Anonymous Accounts

Peer Review Forums Forums Policies Forum Creating Anonymous Accounts

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    • #2030

      United Resource Connection acknowledges and supports the right of individuals to participate anonymously in online communities. There are many situations in which anonymous accounts online are the best option. Here are a few examples:

      1) an employee of an agency does not want their opinions in online forums to be confused as representing those of the agency for whom they work.
      2) an individual with a mental illness wants to start a support group for others, and advertise it in comments or forums on our site, but doesn’t want their identity known to the general public.
      3) an employee of a mental health agency wants to start or participate in a dialog about systemic problems effecting the implementation of best practices of care, but fears reprisals from their employer if they do so.

      And there are many other examples, of course.

      One of the ways in which we support the right to participate anonymously in online communities is by providing specific instructions on how to do so. Here’s how to create an anonymous account within any of the communities of United Resource Connection:

      1) Obtain a disposable email address. A disposable email address is one that you will use only once (to verify an account that needs email verification) and then throw away. A simple internet search will reveal there are a number of online providers of disposable email addresses.
      2) Go through the process of registering an account within one of the communities of United Resource Connection (URC). We have several options for creating an account, including using one of your existing social media account profiles such as a Facebook or Twitter profile. If you want to remain anonymous DO NOT USE your Facebook or Twitter profile to create your URC account unless that social media profile is already an anonymous account. Use a pseudonym (instead of your real name) and your disposable email address to register and verify your account with us.
      3) As soon as your account with us is verified, change your URC account password so that the next person using the disposable email address doesn’t have access to your account password.
      4) Don’t disclose identifying information in your online posts.

      If you want to remain anonymous to the general public on one of our sites then the instructions above will probably be sufficient. If you need a higher level of anonymity, using a TOR browser to view the instructions in the attached .pdf would be more appropriate. To maximize anonymity all links in the .pdf have been disabled — those addresses can easily be found using a TOR browser search engine.

      Providing the ability to create a free user account for community discussions at United Resource Connection is part of our commitment to the free speech rights that anonymity protects. We still reserve the right to delete any accounts that contain threats (to one’s self or others), hate content, spam, or accounts that otherwise violate our Terms of Service. It should also be noted that service providers can be forced by law in some cases to disclose technical details, including the identity of their clients and customers, if those details are known to the service provider.

      The technologies, operations, and policies at United Resource Connection are open for peer commentary in these forums, we invite your open participation.

    • #9787

      Here’s a link to a provider of disposable email addresses:

    • #9788

      Here’s a good article about the right to online anonymity:

    • #9789

      This topic blurs into operations as well, as demonstrated by the operational instructions provided to create an anonymous account. As such the topic should be copied to operations forum, with a link leading to this present forum, such that additional discussion on this topic does not end up in two separate places. Closing the anonymity topic in the operations forum will force those interested in the discussion to follow the link to this forum.

    • #9790

      There is an article located here that provides instruction on creating an anonymous twitter account, which not only can be used in-and-of-itself for whistleblowers communicating anonymously with news media or others, but can also be used to log in anonymously to websites that allow social media profiles to be used as login credentials.

    • #21888

      A Virtual Private Network (VPN) is another way to secure privacy online. A VPN not only protects your anonymity (who you are) but also your location (where you are). Purchasing such technologies can defeat the purpose if you fail to do so anonymously. The article below provides instructions for such situations.

      It is important to note that commercially available VPN services probably log your activity (the websites you visit and the IP address you connect with them from) despite their claims that they do not. So you will still need to use a TOR browser when connecting to your commercial VPN service to mask the IP address you are connecting from.

      Another alternative is create your own VPN, or have a friend you trust create one. It is a very technical process, but there are instructions online. Remember to use anonymous methods when purchasing the parts.

    • #21900

      Here is a “internet safety checklist” provided the Office of the Ohio Secretary of State, to help individuals address potential privacy leaks from their internet browser. It is written for individuals that have a low intelligence quotient when addressing technology.

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