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“Good luck, I’m behind 7 proxies” is a catchphrase typically used as a sarcastic retort when someone either threatens to report you to the authorities, or claims to be able to track down your location.
While no archive of the thread exists, the phrase is believed to come from a 4chan thread on September 15th, 2007.
After cracking into a woman’s computer, Myspace account and college financial assistance fund, the hackers posted several pictures and videos of her on 4chan. When she became aware of this, she went to 4chan in an attempt to have them taken down. After threatening to involve the authorities, she was met with the response: “I WENT THROUGH 7 PROXIES GOOD LUCK". The following screenshot is reported to have come from the thread:
A proxy server allows for an indirect connection from a local network to the Internet. They are often used by companies to track web activity of employees on their network, but can also be used to browse the web anonymously. According to Wikipedia:
An anonymous proxy server (sometimes called a web proxy) generally attempts to anonymize web surfing. There are different varieties of anonymizers. The destination server (the server that ultimately satisfies the web request) receives requests from the anonymizing proxy server, and thus does not receive information about the end user’s address. However, the requests are not anonymous to the anonymizing proxy server, and so a degree of trust is present between the proxy server and the user. Many of them are funded through a continued advertising link to the user.
Search queries for “7 proxies” picked up 1 month after the 4chan thread date in October of 2007. The largest spike was in July of 2010, but it appears to be on the rise again as of June 2011.
On March 1st, 2008, an image macro using a modified version of the phrase was posted to the website MyConfinedSpace.
On March 11th, 2008, a YouTube user named “trollercoasterlulz” referenced the phrase during a raid on another YouTube user named “GayDiamond”:
On October 20th, 2008, a yahoo answers question was posted asking “Is it possible to configure FireFox 3.3 to use 7 proxies?” that may have been a joke referencing the phrase.
An Ubuntu Forums thread from January 31st, 2011, discusses the validity of using 7 proxies to anonymously browse the web. Some claimed the best way method is to use Tor client software, rather than attempt to go through multiple proxy servers.
A Facebook page for the phrase has over 200 ‘likes’ as of June 2011.
Yahoo Answers – Is it possible to configure FireFox 3.3 to use 7 proxies?
Huffington Post – Visa DOWN: WikiLeaks Supporters Take Down Site as Payback