IP address and a PDF website compressor

street7 street7 asked 2 years ago

Dear all,   Thanks for this great service.   I have a critical situation for a friend of mine. Please may you help him.   My friend (R) works in a telecommunication company. Actually this company is an ISP (Internet Service Provider).   He made this mistake:   He should send a PDF file (contains payroll of the employees) to his direct HR manager through email.   They file was huge so he compressed the file using a PDF Website Compressor. Then he sent it to his manager after reducing its size.   In the next day, he recognized that PDF Website Compressor can save the original file in its database for one hour and sometimes for one week or unidentified time.   Now, he is worried about what if that PDF Website Compressor published that payroll PDF file on the Internet and breaching his privacy.   Let us assume that PDF Website Compressor located in Germany and illegally published that payroll PDF file on 20 July 2017.   Question 1: Technically speaking, can his company (ISP) identify who was the source of uploading the original payroll PDF file into the PDF Website Compressor?   Question 2: If yes, what he should do to make it impossible for the ISP company in identifying him?   Please, note that his company located in the Middle East. He is a poor man and has 5 children.   He has no intention to harm his company. It was a mistake where anyone can make it by accident. Please, Help.   You are the best who knows this kind of issues.   BR,   (R)'s Friend  

1 Answers
wimiadmin Staff answered 2 years ago

Hi street7. In the future, please only attempt to post your question once. You attempted like 14 times. We'll get to you...I promise. : )

I'm not sure why the website that compressed the file would publish said file. I would imagine if they continued this practice people wouldn't use their service because nobody wants their files published unknowingly. With that said, it's unlikely that his company would know it's him who uploaded the file via any provided info on the site. However, if he's the only one with access to the file then it would be obvious who uploaded it to compression site. It's unlikely the compression site would give R's IP address to the ISP. In the event they did turn over the IP, it's still unlikely that it would trace back to him specifically. The best you're going to get when tracing an IP is the city where R lives.

If the document is still published, perhaps reaching out to the site and asking them to take it down is a good approach if that's not already been attempted. -Brian

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