Thursday, July 31, 2014

Dark net Tor is not completely dark anymore

Two Carnegie Melon U. (CMU) men described as university researchers and security specialists state they attacked Tor, the dark net site which allows anonymous communication to protect users' identities and locations. The men, Alexander Volynkin and Michael McCord were supposed to give a talk next week  about how they exploited flaws in the system in July 2014 to identify the dark net's users. They call their work the Tor Project. Doesn't sound like a new Marvel movie?  One of Tor's creators has  asked how and what they did it and got minimal responses. The presentation has now been cancelled by CMU's lawyers. Exactly who was unmasked or to what extent, or what info the researchers got is unclear. Maybe this is a NSA setup to go after certain people on Tor. Who really knows? Several countries are very interested in finding someone to unmask the users of Tor. Russia is offering a reward of $110,000.  Germany, the US and the UK are also interested. Tor can be used by reporters and their sources, by criminals, by people in countries which control communications, and by people wishing to avoid being tracked or identified for other reasons. If Tor security really was beaten, it will be interesting to see what info the researchers got and what will be done with it. Will NSA grab the info? Will Tor be finished, or be reinvented as a bigger, better, darker netter? This will cut off a safe option for many people, some with legitimate reasons for secure communications. In today's world, with constantly changing technology, the simple truth is that you can't stay anonymous forever. Read more about it here  http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-28573625

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