Device test for anonymous Internet access Anonymebox


Chip’s opinion: Anonymebox is a complete solution for anonymizing network traffic, which consists mainly of Raspberry Pi 3 and appropriately pre-installed software (Tor, VPN).

It only took a few minutes to set up during the test, and the included «security guide» will help anyone who wants to delve into the topics of privacy and encryption. At the same time, Anonymebox is focused on the use of beginners in this business — experienced users can mount a similar “box” on their own.

pros Minuses
Surf anonymization Little customization options (WebGUI)
Ability to organize VPN access Download speed fluctuates
Very easy setup

For beginners

The fact that when surfing the web leaves traces on the network, and providers save connection history, should already be known to most users. To protect data from spying, the use of Tor software and various VPNs (virtual private networks) is recommended — however, the inability of many users to properly configure these services and use them primarily on each end device can become a big obstacle.

Anonymebox should help in this matter, which can be connected according to the “Plug and Play” principle. However, according to the results of the test, this box does not promise much.

Device test for anonymous Internet access Anonymebox
Box: just plug it in and surfing becomes anonymous

Connection and setup

Anonymebox consists of a Raspberry PI 3 and a preconfigured system, which in the device we tested resides on a 4GB microSD card. Other content included in the box is a 270-page «security guide» covering all the latest privacy and encryption topics, as well as a USB-LAN adapter from LogiLink, in case you want to transfer your data outside of WLAN.

Since the box based on Raspberry PI is aimed at novice users, the setup is made extremely simple: you just need to connect Anonymebox to the router via a LAN cable and select the “anonymebox” network created by the anonymizer on the computer. The default password here is the word «password» — you need to change it as soon as possible. The same applies to the web interface of the system, which you can now enter by typing «» in the address bar or the IP address using the «admin» account with the password «password» to log in.

Further configuration, in principle, is not mandatory, because after connecting to the WLAN network from the “box”, you already become an anonymous Internet surfer, accessing the network from a smartphone, tablet and laptop. However, even with Anonymebox, there are still a few things you should pay attention to in order to leave as few traces on the web as possible. Which ones — we will tell in the paragraph under the heading «boundaries of anonymity».

How Anonymous works

By default, the system works with the Tor network, which sends requests to your computer through several nodes in different countries, so it will no longer be possible to «track traces». To provide an even higher level of privacy, these nodes change to new ones every 10 minutes. However, navigating through Tor isn’t particularly fast: during Anonymebox’s test runs, we got download speeds of several megabits per second. However, in most cases, for surfing and broadcasting YouTube clips without slowdowns, this should be enough. Those who need more speed should use the second connection option: VPN.

The manufacturer of the device, pi3g, offers two VPN servers (Germany, USA) with “turbo mode”, with which you can surf the net much faster. Anyone who wants to use this service pays 10 euros and receives an activation code that unlocks the function for one month. It’s good that pi3g does not work on the principle of «subscription», that is, the user will not need to take any active action to disable the service.

However, the increase in speed comes at the cost of anonymity: VPN operators are required to store data and issue it when requested. Of course, the services of VPN servers and the Tor network are needed not only to hide traces of your presence on the Internet. With their help, you can easily bypass the so-called geo-blocking in order to watch multimedia content blocked for display in your country.

Anonymebox’s additional features include filter lists, with which you can, for example, block sites with pornographic content. The only pity is that the web interface does not allow you to edit lists or add new filters.

Device test for anonymous Internet access Anonymebox
Accessories: safety guide and USB-LAN adapter

Limits of anonymity

As we already mentioned, a VPN does not provide 100% privacy protection, but Tor also has its drawbacks: since anyone can create a node, then, in principle, it is possible for certain organizations and authorities to create such nodes and try to track data. The likelihood that something will work out is insignificant, but still it exists.

Also, we are not talking about anonymity if the user logs in to some service or directly in the browser. Anyone who would like to surf the web with the maximum degree of anonymity must use a browser specially designed for this purpose and deactivate the tracking functions. In our article “Going Online Anonymously: How to Go Unnoticed Online” you will find some basic tips.

Device test for anonymous Internet access Anonymebox
Short test shows: outside our location is not determined

Anonymebox or self-built solution?

A ready-made solution on the official website costs 189 euros (11,900 rubles) — at first glance, for a Raspberry Pi with a couple of add-ons, this seems overpriced. Nevertheless, everything quickly falls into place: as soon as you start calculating the cost of the components assembled together, then only about 5000-6000 rubles will remain for installation, configuration, as well as service and support of the system.

Therefore, for a «Plug and Play» solution that passes all devices on your network through Tor or VPN, such a cost seems quite adequate to us. However, someone who is familiar with this topic can save extra money by simply downloading the Anonymebox image and building an anonymizer based on their Raspberry.


raspberry pi


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