Torrents and Torrent Trackers

Article author
Josh Lamb
  • Updated

Many businesses and organizations desire to block Torrents because of the substantial amount of bandwidth this type of traffic consumes as well as its use in many cases to download illegal or explicit content. However, torrent traffic is almost impossible to block, given the nature of its operation. Torrenting applications are not limited to a single port or protocol, so basic firewall rules cannot effectively stop it. With the advent of WebRTC, torrent traffic can even take place over HTTP.

There are, however, a few measures which can greatly reduce the activity and impact of torrenting:

  1. Prevent access to tracker sites which distribute .torrent files
  2. Implement a Layer-7 firewall which can perform deep packet inspection
  3. Use QOS to throttle bandwidth-hogging endpoints

DNSFilter can effectively implement the first solution in this list - preventing access to sites which are known to distribute .torrent files. You can easily do this by blocking the P2P & Illegal category in your site policy. This will prevent end users from browsing to these sites and initiating torrent downloads from them.

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Implementing firewall rules and Quality of Service rate-limits can also curb users which are engaging in torrenting activity. There are multiple security vendors which provide physical or virtual firewall appliances that can perform application-layer inspection as well as bandwidth-limiting to applications.

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