Torrents are often used to gain access to and download content through peer-to-peer file sharing. A torrent basically contains the metadata to movies, songs, photos and images, and software available for download. File sharing is totally legal, yet there are risks that are associated with using torrents. Many people use torrents for internet piracy and copyright infringement, thus making it illegal.

How do torrents really work, though? In their true sense, torrents allow users to download content faster by breaking the file into separate pieces and dispersing them to multiple servers instead of utilizing only one specific server for everything. The torrent file that is downloaded keeps track of the location of each piece and the alternate servers they are downloaded from.

By reducing the file load, torrents make it easier and faster to retrieve content online. You must have a strong internet connection to handle the amount of speed needed to download files using a torrent. Downloading from a good torrent site has its advantages, from streaming freedom to increased download speeds.

Torrents are a great way to get access to your desired content and files online, but if it is used improperly, it can lead to serious risks against you and your computer. You must be safe and take precautions when using torrents to download content. Not only are you vulnerable but you could also get into some legal troubles as well. Here are four risks that come with using torrents.

1. Vulnerability

When you are utilizing torrents, you are more vulnerable than when you aren’t using them. You are exposing yourself to online hackers when you download certain files. Hackers are known to use torrents to gain access to your sensitive information through peer-to-peer networks. These hackers use your IP address shown when you download certain files to your computer and can use your information in any way they want.

This can be detrimental to those that store sensitive and important data and information on their hard drive. Losing important files can lead to problems and a damaged reputation. This can cause devastation to a business or company, especially because customers will not trust a business that gets hacked.

Your privacy will be weakened and you could have financial losses if you don’t have the necessary protection against hackers on your computer. Make sure to implement the appropriate cybersecurity to ensure your files are secure.

2. Legal issues

It can be a little messy if you don’t manage your torrent use properly. Legal issues can happen if you are using torrents illegally. Most files downloaded from torrent sites contain copyrighted material causing legal matters to be the biggest risk of using torrents. Laws have cracked down and surveillance of torrent users has increased due to the amount of copyright infringement.

Legal consequences are the result of any illegal downloads or copyrighted files found on a users device. If you don’t want to be fined large amounts or have your ISP suspended, you should take precaution when utilizing a torrent the way you want. Torrents are ideal sites for computer geeks or tech gurus because of its beneficial properties when it comes to content and file sharing. It can get out of hand, though, if a user is illegally downloading content and is caught doing so.

Every torrent isn’t illegal, finding legal content and files is the best route to spare yourself the legal problems that can result from using torrents the wrong way.

3. Malware

Malware is common in many instances when it comes to computers and sharing data. It is always advised that you have some kind of cybersecurity to protect you from invasive threats to your computer or device. The files you are downloading are linked to others and you won’t know if it contains a virus or not until after you download it. This can be a dangerous game that can lead to serious issues regarding your information and data security.

Use an anti-virus service or program to scan the file to see if it is a threat to your computer or not. Reported files that are malicious are usually removed from the torrent sites, but sometimes you aren’t able to tell if a file contains dangerous content. Keep your files and stored information secure with some of the most popular anti-virus protection available online:

  • Norton 360
  • McAfee Antivirus Plus
  • Webroot SecureAnywhere Antivirus
  • Bitdefender antivirus
  • Kaspersky
  • ESET NOD32
  • Trend Micro Antivirus
  • Voodoo Shield

4. Data Loss

Another serious risk of using torrents to download content is the possibility of losing your important data. It’s important that you keep your personal data secure when you are using a site that allows peer-to-peer file sharing. Whether you are using your personal device or a business device, you want to make sure that you aren’t exposing yourself to the dangers of using torrents.

The stored data that is on your device can be compromised when you are downloading files from a torrent, especially if you are using the same folder for all of your files. To avoid this you can simply use a different folder for your torrent downloads and another for your stored files on your computer. You can use a form of antivirus protection to give the security of your files from outsiders.


Overall, the use of torrents can be greatly beneficial for those who are looking to maximize download speeds and limit the number of congestion files can cause to your network. Think about the possible data breaches that happen to professional establishments and medical facilities due to cybercriminals when there isnt a use of torrents. These establishments can get hacked even with security measures in place, so don’t think you’re exempt because you aren’t handling such sensitive information. You are more secure with cybersecurity but you should always double-check your downloads and practice safe P2P sharing.

Using torrents isn’t illegal and there should always be a form of protection set in place to give security to your already stored information. You can easily be exposed to cybercriminals online that can cause detrimental losses.

Understand that even though you can access files faster and easier with torrent sites, using them can cause drawbacks. Keep up with your passwords and change them regularly. You also want to scan your files after downloading them to make sure you aren’t allowing viruses to attack your computer.