The Tor network encrypts the data and transforms it into a so called packet wrapper.
This enables a relaying privacy which places unknown intermediaries between Alice and Amazon. When nodes encrypt and forward Alice's data, they don't know much.
All a relaying node can see is what the previous peer sent and the next destination of the data.
Also, the path of choice is completely random. This means that any of the 6000+ relay nodes can receive the access data, encrypt it, and pass it along.
There is an un-encrypted part of the Tor setup, though. It's found in the communication between the last relaying node and the data receiver.
In our example, Amazon will be able to see information about the exit node.This means that identifying Alice involves route path backtracking and step-by-stepdata decryption.
The Tor de-anonymization process is not impossible, but definitely challenging and resource-intensive.
Nonetheless, the most private Tor communications take place between Tor users.
If someone who doesn't use encryption interacts with a Tor user, then part of the anonimity is gone. Hackers will just have to extract or social engineer data from the unprotected party.
Also, Tor’s privacy and anonymity are not perfect.
For example, Europol has been able to take down dark market websites in 2014. This was part of their initiative to crack down on illicit online activities.
Yet only because some criminals use Tor doesn't mean that it's a protocol for criminals.Investigation journalists, diplomats, law enforcement officials, and generally vulnerable people all need Tor.
The privacy protocol allows internet users to communicate in a safer environment. And often times, Tor strengthens law enforcement and human rights protection.
Likewise, the Tor browser is an excellent way of repelling trackers, ads, and malware.