Author Topic: Does avast! eavesdrop on SecureLine traffic?  (Read 22066 times)

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Offline skywire

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Does avast! eavesdrop on SecureLine traffic?
« on: May 23, 2013, 05:17:34 AM »
The marketing blurb for SecureLine says "Nobody can see who you are or what you are doing on the internet". But the linked Terms of Service say, "If we see anything that is over the line, we are obligated to turn it over to the authorities and we may have to shut off your access," which strongly implies that avast! can and does "see what one is doing". Which is true?

Offline polonus

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Re: Does avast! eavesdrop on SecureLine traffic?
« Reply #1 on: May 24, 2013, 01:48:16 AM »
Based on witopia it provides SSL and PPTP VPN tunnels for the rest of us. The tunnel connects from your computer to a VPN gateway in the cloud, and all communications sent over this connection are secure.

It does for all data what a VPN connection to the office does for corporate information,

polonus
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Offline Lisandro

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Re: Does avast! eavesdrop on SecureLine traffic?
« Reply #2 on: May 24, 2013, 01:52:46 PM »
I'm waiting for an "official" answer too :)
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Offline user_1000

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Re: Does avast! eavesdrop on SecureLine traffic?
« Reply #3 on: May 25, 2013, 10:56:27 AM »
The marketing blurb for SecureLine says "Nobody can see who you are or what you are doing on the internet". But the linked Terms of Service say, "If we see anything that is over the line, we are obligated to turn it over to the authorities and we may have to shut off your access," which strongly implies that avast! can and does "see what one is doing". Which is true?

Very interesting. And what is the smallest activity which is over the line? Copyright infringement? Which country's law applies? Czech Republic?
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Offline user_1000

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Re: Does avast! eavesdrop on SecureLine traffic?
« Reply #4 on: May 28, 2013, 09:22:26 AM »
The marketing blurb for SecureLine says "Nobody can see who you are or what you are doing on the internet". But the linked Terms of Service say, "If we see anything that is over the line, we are obligated to turn it over to the authorities and we may have to shut off your access," which strongly implies that avast! can and does "see what one is doing". Which is true?

Very interesting. And what is the smallest activity which is over the line? Copyright infringement? Which country's law applies? Czech Republic?

These are an important questions and must be answered by the Avast team.
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Offline Ojief

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Re: Does avast! eavesdrop on SecureLine traffic?
« Reply #5 on: May 31, 2013, 08:41:58 PM »
Based on witopia it provides SSL and PPTP VPN tunnels for the rest of us. The tunnel connects from your computer to a VPN gateway in the cloud, and all communications sent over this connection are secure.

It does for all data what a VPN connection to the office does for corporate information,

polonus

This is related with the previous secureline release, the most recent, which is embedded in Avast A8R2 uses OpenVPN/SSL.
And yes all data goes through it.

Offline user_1000

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Re: Does avast! eavesdrop on SecureLine traffic?
« Reply #6 on: June 01, 2013, 09:17:05 AM »
@Ojief

You seem to be an Avast team member. Please, answer also to the other questions... Those are very important questions.
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Offline ManyQs

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Re: Does avast! eavesdrop on SecureLine traffic?
« Reply #7 on: June 01, 2013, 09:38:22 AM »
To answer your question about jurisdiction, user_1000, you will find that under #11 in all of the license agreements, except for the EasyPass agreement and that lists jursidiction under 15.B, but still under the State of California.

http://www.avast.com/en-gb/eula

Quote
11. Governing Law and Jurisdiction

The laws of the State of California, excluding its conflicts of law rules, govern this Agreement and your use of the Software and the Documentation. The application of the United Nations Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods is expressly excluded. The courts located within the county of Santa Clara, California shall be the exclusive jurisdiction and venue for any dispute or legal matter arising out of or in connection with this Agreement or your use of the Software and the Documentation. Notwithstanding this, you agree that AVAST shall still be allowed to apply for injunctive remedies (or an equivalent type of urgent legal relief) in any jurisdiction.

Offline user_1000

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Re: Does avast! eavesdrop on SecureLine traffic?
« Reply #8 on: June 01, 2013, 11:07:59 AM »
@ManyQs

AFAIK: Those license agreements are not for the Avast SecureLine VPN.
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Offline ManyQs

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Re: Does avast! eavesdrop on SecureLine traffic?
« Reply #9 on: June 01, 2013, 01:08:57 PM »
@ManyQs

AFAIK: Those license agreements are not for the Avast SecureLine VPN.

Two thoughts on that:

Firstly, a company will usually keep legal affairs bundled under one jurisdiction.  Doesn't mean it's the case here, but usually.  Actually, I was a little surprised to see that business about California.

Secondly, do you have a link to the Avast SecureLine VPN?  There should be some sort of User Agreement link, if is doesn't fall under another agreement. 

I wonder why the Avast SecureLine VPN agreement isn't listed on that main page that has the links for all the other agreements?

Anyway, thank you for bringing me up to date on that, user_1000.

Offline Davidek

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Re: Does avast! eavesdrop on SecureLine traffic?
« Reply #10 on: June 06, 2013, 04:30:49 PM »
Sorry for the late reply on this.

It's a valid question that has been brought up as there is some ambiguity in terms of what is stated in the AUP.  We will work on cleaning that up.  Officially, this is our point of view:

Avast, like any other provider of VPN services, must ensure that our customers do not use our services to violate the law, for instance, by downloading copyrighted materials without permission of the copyright owner. We cannot and do not actively monitor for this.  However, if we receive a complaint about misuse (for instance, from a copyright owner), we will investigate and take action if the complaint is correct. This is standard procedure for reputable providers of VPN services. 
« Last Edit: June 06, 2013, 04:37:05 PM by DavidJA »

Offline Cirqle

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Re: Does avast! eavesdrop on SecureLine traffic?
« Reply #11 on: June 11, 2013, 12:11:44 AM »
Sorry for the late reply on this.

It's a valid question that has been brought up as there is some ambiguity in terms of what is stated in the AUP.  We will work on cleaning that up.  Officially, this is our point of view:

Avast, like any other provider of VPN services, must ensure that our customers do not use our services to violate the law, for instance, by downloading copyrighted materials without permission of the copyright owner. We cannot and do not actively monitor for this.  However, if we receive a complaint about misuse (for instance, from a copyright owner), we will investigate and take action if the complaint is correct. This is standard procedure for reputable providers of VPN services.

If you actually recieve a complaint about missuse from a copyright owner then your VPN doesnt really work, does it? I honestly don't know much about these things but after new laws here in Norway which states that companies have the right to monitor what we do on the internet, I'd like to be anonymous - not because I like to download illegal materials (which i of course don't), but for the sake of my freedom. And if I have read up on what VPN's actually do correctly a copyright owner wouldn't be able to be suspicous if i use the VPN correctly. Which leads to the question, do i have the right information about what VPN's do? For example; if I download something illegally through a VPN located in another country, and the copyright owner tracked it - wouldn't he end up tracking me to another country far away from his jurisdiction plus have no idea where i am? Sorry if i formulated that weirdly - english isn't my first language.

Edit: Okay! I have read up on this more thoroughly, and it seems I was wrong. BUT! My point still stands, if you can actually go in and search in your LOGS for whoever did the missuse of said copyright then we're not really anonymous, are we? Since you at Avast can still see what we're doing - if you want to i mean...? http://torrentfreak.com/vpn-services-that-take-your-anonymity-seriously-2013-edition-130302/ shows a list of VPNs that actually do it right. You are not on that list. I freakin' love your antivirus and all, pretty much the best antivirus i have ever tried, but this VPN of yours looks like total bull to me.
« Last Edit: June 11, 2013, 11:06:14 AM by Cirqle »

Offline user_1000

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Re: Does avast! eavesdrop on SecureLine traffic?
« Reply #12 on: June 16, 2013, 08:34:22 PM »
@DavidJA
Thanks for your answer. So basically you're saying that a copyright infringement is the smallest activity which can lead to reporting to any(?) country's authorities,  if Avast receives a complaint from the copyright owner. Very nice, if someone does a copyright infringement by a mistake. In my country customer is a much better protected.

There is an interesting article about the VPN services and privacy. There are also VPN providers that takes customer's privacy seriously (or at least they claim so).
http://torrentfreak.com/vpn-services-that-take-your-anonymity-seriously-2013-edition-130302/
« Last Edit: June 16, 2013, 09:19:18 PM by user_1000 »
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