The last five years have seen the development of Second-level ISP’s. They are actually a type of anonymous internet access providers which is distinct from other anonymous browsing solutions (proxy lists, Tor, JAP). A Second-level ISP provides secure and anonymous internet access using two main technologies: SSH tunneling and Virtual Private Networks (VPN). The best ones offer both, often for the same price.
Secure internet communications of this type used to be reserved to corporations, especially before 2000. Second level ISP’s are designed for use by individuals, which have an increasing demand for secure internet access to protect their activity when online, for many reasons, including identity theft.
An Internet Service Provider (ISP) is usually understood as a service that provides users with access to the Internet, whether dial-up or broadband. “Second-level” ISP’s are providers that create an encrypted secure connection within a regular connection. All the traffic is then encrypted starting from the user’s computer all the way to the provider’s secure servers and then redirected to its final destination (the website visited).
In most countries, Internet Service Providers retain log files that shows the times your IP address was used and where it connected to. Some providers save these log files indefinitely and they may give these files to whoever asks with or without a court order, meaning that every website visited, uploads, downloads and all the traffic of millions of users is no longer private. The results of this can be stalking electronically or physically, identity theft, and other forms of harassment.