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Anonymous, in a general computing context, means keeping a user's name and identity concealed through various applications. For security, an application may require that users' names be kept anonymous in order to maintain their privacy or to protect them against cybercrimes such as personal identity theft. Some anonymous computing is done for malicious purposes, in which case users conceal their identities out of fear of social or legal repercussions. Other times, individual anonymous users simply have protective measures in mind.
In communications or social network applications, anonymous posts or entries can be sustained. Legitimate electronic transactions in banking institutions may keep one of the parties anonymous. Other applications offer anonymous file transfers, anonymous logins, anonymous emailing and anonymous blogging (anonoblog). The personal identifiers of anonymous users can be difficult to determine based on the strength of the application's security features. An anonymous proxy helps to protect the confidentiality of web searches so that website operators and other Internet eavesdroppers cannot trace the user's electronic steps or searches.