The most commonly used file sharing software programs can usually be found through a simple search on your computer. The most popular programs to keep an eye out for are:
- Azureus AKA Vuze
- Mainline AKA BitTorrent
While these programs are not illegal themselves, you should be aware of what that software is being used for and the potential dangers. Inside these programs you can see all the files that are being downloaded to and uploaded from your computer. One easy way to check if your computer is sharing files is to use the Digital File Check software – this program will show what, if any, file sharing software is on your computer, and what files are being shared. It will also provide you with options if you wish to remove any or all of these – it will not report any information to anyone else, nor will it force you to delete anything you don’t choose to.
You can also follow the steps in the ‘Finding the Problem’ video on our Staying Legal Online page:
- If you’re on a PC, just type ‘torrent’ into the search window of your start menu to check if you have any of these programs, and remove the program by entering your Control Panel and finding the software in the “Add or Remove Programs” menu.
- If you’re on a Mac, you can search for file-sharing programs through the finder – just search ‘torrent’, or the name of any particular software, then all you need to do is drag the program into your trash.
You can also check your web browser’s search history for websites which provide links to illegally shared files. Visiting these websites is not illegal, but again, you should be aware of what your family is doing online, and may wish to discuss with them about appropriate websites to visit – especially as many of these sites may contain content you wouldn’t want your family exposed to. The top 10 most-used sites to watch for are:
- The Pirate Bay