Part 1 - How do you get caught?
Your PC will send a request to websites you visit asking the website to return a page to you. Your IP address is contained within that request.
All IP addresses across the globe are assigned to organizations by region registries. In other words, if you are using a Virgin Cable internet connection, your IP is associated to Virgin Cable.
Therefore, if you commit something illegal on a website, the website and the authorities will know to contact Virgin Cable to request information pertaining to you.
Part 2 - How do you not get caught?
Simple! In 2 ways..
1. By accessing the website from a different IP address.
2. By making it as tricky as possible to pin the action on you.
Let's start with the first way..
There are multiple ways to access a website from a different IP. We have VPNs, HTTP Proxies, Socks, RDPs and more. Each have their pro's and cons. None is perfect.
For example, HideMyAss is one of the most popular VPNs in the world. But they are well known to collect logs on your activity. In other words, when you access a website via their VPN then the website does not know your IP. But hide my ass DOES. Therefore, the website needs to just ask HideMyAss and they will tell the website your IP happily.
There are VPNs that DO NOT LOG your IP. These are rare, so I won't share them here. But if you research you will find them.
Anything that is free is normally bad. I have a saying.. You pay peanuts then you get a monkey.. Why would someone give you a free SOCKs or VPN? Would you give one out for free if you paid for it?
So what's the best option? The best option is called Chaining.
Part 3 - Chaining
Chaining means linking lots of methods together. Here's what it looks like without chaining...
Your PC ----> Website
Here's what it looks like WITH chaining...
Your PC ---> SOCKs server ---> openVPN server ---> paid for vpn server ---> website
Part 4 - taking it to the next level
Research the following ...
1. Running a 'live cd' from a disposable USB stick. Encrypt the LiveCD.
2. Mac spoofing
3. Buy a 3g/4g dongle using cash. Only connect to the internet via this.
4. Hosting your own openVPN servers to hop traffic between countries
Any questions about this stuff ask away!