Eve knows a lot about technology and how the internet operates. She uses many online services for her work and knows how to protect herself against potential stalkers, hackers and haters. She works in a dedicated dungeon and keeps her private life completely separated from her work life.
When SESTA/FOSTA was passed, and online services abruptly started locking down or deleting accounts without any warning, one of her accounts was deleted, but she didn’t lose her data because she had backed everything up and is now advertising her services on a more reliable platform that recognizes her right to anonymity as the ultimate protection against many threats she faces.
To protect herself against stalking or outing, Eve has created a completely different work identity that cannot be connected to her official one, or to the identity she uses with her family and friends.
Here’s all the things she has considered to manage her work identity and other online personas:
An Identity for Each Level of Trust
Eve has come out to her closest friends, but not to her family of origin or neighbours – and she prefers to keep it that way. While there are some people she can immediately talk to about her work (for example those she meets at play parties), in general she doesn’t give her official identity to people who haven’t gained her full trust and avoids talking about her job with people she meets in more conventional situations.
Therefore, Eve has organized her communication channels and social media accounts by levels of trust - which are also connected to her different life spheres. She has one identity for each of these spheres:
- Bureaucracy (taxes, bank…)
- People she has just met
- Close friends
By separating all these spheres, she can limit the amount of information she gives to people she does not trust.
Choosing a Name
Like many pro dommes, Eve has chosen a work name that sounds cool, but on commercial social networking platforms her username is Eve “Pentest” Adams. She has added a real-sounding surname to her work name and, although this sounds boring, there is an important reason.
On the internet, platforms that have “real name” policies (like Facebook) tend to base this judgement on an individual’s legal name, rather than allowing them to identify as they choose. Many companies require both a first name and surname for registration (or a name that doesn’t contain any slang terms or profanities), so Eve has added a common surname to her work name. Ultimately, this won’t protect her if she falls under the radar of the “real name” policy enforcers, but automated controls won’t spot her name as a potential violation and she can hope to keep her account for some time.
Once she decided on a name, a surname, and a username for her work persona, Eve also did thorough research on various sex work platforms, as well as following this guide, so she is sure that nobody else is using that name, at least among sex workers in her city.
A Phone for Each Identity
Eve wants to be sure that her work identity can never be connected to her official one - not by stalkers, or neighbours, or even by state authorities.
Eve knows that phones have several weak spots that can make her easier to track. So, to be sure, the first thing she did after deciding on her work name was to buy a new phone with a new pre-paid SIM card for her new identity.
She has registered all of her online work accounts with the new phone number, accesses her online work accounts only with her work phone, and when she goes to her work appointments only brings this device with her and leaves her other personal phone at home.
She is also aware that a common stalker might find out where she is by looking at geolocation metadata in the pictures and posts she publishes online, so she has disabled GPS access for the apps in her phone and keeps her GPS off all the time – except for only briefly when she really needs to find her position on a map.
When Eve connects to the internet for her work she prefers to leave as few traces as possible – for example the IP address of her home connection, which for the authorities (and for hackers) can lead directly to her official name and home address. Therefore, when she created her work accounts (email, sex work platforms, social media, etc.) she used Tor Browser, and she only accesses these work accounts through her work phone, or when using the Tor Browser on her computer.
Eve’s Tips on Email
When she started looking for an email provider that would be good to use for work, Eve already knew that there is no such thing as a secure email. By default, emails are not encrypted and if someone can access the servers where messages are stored (often over several machines belonging to both the sender’s and receiver’s email provider), they can read everything. This includes investigators, but also a random system administrator who has access to these machines.
Eve knew that she would not use her email for any sensitive content, but she still wanted to make sure that her email could not be tapped while in transit. So, she only chose among email providers that use HTTPS/TLS encryption, which encrypts connections from her computer to the servers, and she made sure the TLS encryption was actually working by testing the provider she’d chosen on this webpage.
To be contacted by her clients, Eve has a Protonmail account which does encrypt her messages with other Protonmail users all along the way so messages are not readable in the servers. However, she doesn’t consider this encryption reliable enough because emails with people who do not have a mailbox on Protonmail are not encrypted.
Separate Email Accounts
To keep things really separated, Eve has a different email account for each of her separate identities and has created different online accounts, according to her different needs, with that corresponding email address.
For her work, she has created a Protonmail account so encrypting communications with her clients becomes easier.
To be sure her accounts can’t be hacked into, Eve uses strong and unique passwords for each of her accounts. She generates these passwords, consisting in random sequences of lower- and uppercase letters, numbers, and symbols with an offline password manager and doesn’t have to remember them because she has stored them in the password manager.
The only passphrases Eve needs to remember are the ones she needs to unblock her devices and her password manager. To memorize these easily, she has created these passphrases with the diceware method.
Eve’s Online Accounts
To advertise her services, Eve uses both mainstream social networking platforms and specialized platforms for BDSM communities and sex work. At the same time, she uses different accounts on almost all these websites to also communicate with her family, friends, and lovers, but, of course, she uses different accounts for each of them.
She has the following accounts:
|Platform||Contacts||Real or Fake Name||Level of Trust||NSFW?||Disposable Account|
|Friends||Realistic Fake Name 1||High||Yes||Yes|
|Friends||Realistic Fake Name 2||High||Yes||Yes|
|Fetlife||Friends and lovers||Fake Name 2||High||OFC!||No|
To keep her accounts really separated, she avoids connecting them to her real identity unless she’s decided to use her official identity in the first place (as she does with her family, or her bank - who both know it anyway). Additionally, she keeps more stable accounts where one can always find her such as on dedicated platforms like Switter (a sex-worker friendly social space) or commercial sex work platforms, and tells her contacts that they can find her there if her other accounts are suddenly deleted or blocked.
However, Eve never takes for granted that these accounts will last very long and keeps a backup of everything she wants to keep in her local machine and an external hard drive.
To keep her accounts isolated, and be sure that they cannot be connected to each other, Eve follows these additional rules:
- She only manages her work accounts from her work device.
- She doesn’t follow the same people from different accounts connected to different identities.
- She is careful never to befriend one of her identities with another separate identity, and never to post the same content with different identities.
- Eve knows that most social networking platforms will display her location whenever they can, so she disables geolocation in her phone apps, and activates the GPS in her devices only when she really needs it.
- Eve also knows that many apps and cameras will embed metadata into her photos, which can include the date, time and location of the photo among other things. This metadata may be included in the pictures and videos she shares online, so she always checks that geolocation is disabled when she takes pictures and shoots videos.
Most importantly, Eve never re-uses personal photos for work. She knows that many search engines offer reverse image search functionalities that can identify all the places where a picture was published. To avoid someone connecting her work identity with other identities through a reverse image search, she never uses pictures she has published in other accounts on her work profiles or when communicating with her clients.
In general, Eve keeps her eye out for platforms that do not prohibit “adult content”, rests in jurisdictions outside of the US (and the Five Eyes, an anglophone intelligence alliance comprising Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States), and offer other security features like two-factor authentication or payments in Bitcoin or through other methods that protect her anonymity.
Different Payment Methods
Eve avoids using online payment methods that are connected to her real identity for purchases that can connect her to her work (e.g. for buying her website domain name or hosting).
To avoid connecting her real identity to her work identity she uses pre-paid cards she buys at supermarkets, or asks clients to buy these for her. Some other options she has considered are listed here.
To avoid giving clients too much power over her digital life, and to be sure nobody can spy on her through her own devices, she never lets clients pay for her website or other online services and never accepts devices as gifts.
Communicate with Clients
Eve has several ways to be reached by new clients: they can write to her through a form on her website or through dedicated platforms like Tryst. Both channels are connected to an email address that she only uses to review potential new clients’ requests, so she doesn’t have her usual mailbox flooded by incoming messages and spam.
Often potential new clients will ask her for more pictures of her, and she has a portfolio of pictures she created precisely for this purpose.
Staying in Touch with Clients
Once she has decided to arrange a session with a new client, she asks them to establish a more secure contact than email. In her confirmation email she writes:
I would be happy to make plans for a session, but first it would be good to establish a more trusted communication channel, both for your and my safety. We can keep talking on one of the following platforms - just let me know which one you prefer:
- If you want to keep using emails, you can create an account on Protonmail: https://protonmail.com Once you’ve set it up, you can contact me on this address from that account.
- If you prefer to use a phone, we can use one of the following tools:
- Wire - https://app.wire.com - you can create an account with your computer, and then install the app in your phone, logging in with the account you created.
- Signal - https://signal.org/ - this is also a good solution if you don’t mind using your phone number. Of course, you could also get a different phone number to create an account. Let me know, Eve
If the client chooses Wire or Signal, Eve sets messages to disappear within 1 day, so even if she or the client loses their device, the messages can’t be seen by anybody else, as they will have already disappeared.
Eve’s Work Website
Eve also has her own website to advertise her services in a place she owns and controls.
When she decided to buy a domain for her website, she looked for providers that included privacy protection in their basic package, but then she found an even better option, even if a bit more expensive. She registered her domain with the anonymous domain name provider Njalla, which accepts an encrypted anonymous request to register her domain.
Eve’s website is hosted by a provider run by sex workers for sex workers that she found in this list of hosting providers. This list includes hosting providers that are not based in the U.S. and are not bound to enforce SESTA/FOSTA, and don’t implement practices that can harm sex workers:
- Red Umbrella: https://redumbrella.ch/
- Sex worker friendly
- Icelandic servers
- Free SSL certificate
- WordPress support </br>
- Orange Website: https://www.orangewebsite.com/
- Anonymous sign-up (email only)
- No logging
- 2-factor authentication
- 100% green energy </br>
- Abelohost: https://abelohost.com/
- “Offshore” and Netherland-based server options
- Dutch jurisdiction
- Free site migration (with one-year plan)
- WordPress support
- Accepts bitcoin
Because Eve understands how important anonymity is for her own safety, she also wants her clients to be anonymous when visiting her site – so she has set her web server to record as few logs as possible and has made sure that her website can be accessed through the Tor network.
Dealing with Clients
Finally, Eve has a few rules on how she deals with clients, to give them (or others) zero chance of controlling her in case one of them turns out to be a stalker, or worse.
When going out with clients to public places, where other people might recognize her face, she never uses her credit card and has clients pay for her if a card is needed.
She knows that infecting a smartphone or another electronic device with malware is cheap and easy, so always keeps her phone with her. She never leaves it unattended and never accepts smartphones or other electronic devices as a gift from clients.
And since caution is never enough, she has locked her devices with strong passwords, so even if she loses them or leaves them somewhere, nobody can access them anyway.
Privacy Protection is Important to Everyone
Now that Eve has secured her boundaries she has a safer place to play. Respect for privacy is fundamental and sharing digital information should not only be based on trust. It is a big responsibility we all must take and work hard to protect it.