What is Usenet?
Usenet is a network of individuals that share files or articles with common labels that are called “newsgroups” (for example alt.movies, alt.tvshows, alt.music).
Usenet is not brand new and has been around before the internet was developed.
Today Usenet uses an NZB file. What is an NZB file? It is an XML-based format of a file to receive posts from NNTP, better known as Usenet servers.
What is Usenet used for?
Usenet is used for an array of things. In the beginning, it was used for a general purpose of allowing users to read and post messages (articles or posts), to one or multiple categories.
Since its start, Usenet now lets you post and receive files as well. The individual labels or categories are considered “newsgroups’. A Usenet Newsgroup is very similar to a discussion forum, but also distinctly different in its unique way.
You can find Usenet Newsgroup lists on the internet that can help you in finding different things on Usenet with ease.
Is it safer than Torrenting?
First and foremost, they can both be pretty safe, so long as you are not downloading illegal content (copyrighted material).
With that being said, you can encounter problems, like with anything, when dealing with data transfer over the web. One example is exposing your IP address and exposing your habits of downloading.
Yes, It is. Here’s why.
Usenet is safer, due to you not directly sharing files with others, and therefore, tracking activity is much more difficult. At the same time, you are not completely anonymous either.
Using a VPN (virtual private network) service for added security is highly recommended and not hard to do. There are many services you can access with a simple search on your favorite search engine or check out Torguard and NordVPN review here.
Let’s break it down.
First, you will need a subscription to a Usenet provider. They will allow a monthly data-capped plan that allows you to get information within Usenet. Like an internet service provider, your Usenet provider gives you access to all the same files.
Unlike Torrenting, Usenet providers are good at keeping your downloads, as well as Usenet server history, and not sharing that information. Most providers use an SSL or Secure Socket Layer for all your activity.
This assures nobody, but your provider has a clue as to what files you download. Even if your ISP (internet service provider) notice you are using up a lot of bandwidth, they will have no idea how or why.
For all, they know you are downloading the newest Linux build or streaming 3-hour documentaries online. One more great thing about Usenet is it differs from the usual peer-to-peer in one major way. Tracking peer-to-peer is as simple as looking at the IP address of someone seeding files.
Usenet servers are filled with files uploaded by people like yourself, so you don’t broadcast your IP to anyone. Only your Usenet provider sees this, and they do not keep lasting record of your activities.