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Re: [tor-talk] On the Theory of Remailers

On 9 January 2013 10:05, Alexandre Guillioud
<guillioud.alexandre@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> Hi all,
> I'm reading your conversation, and i'm not understanding very well what you
> mean by high/low latency network. Isn't it just a ping duration delta ?
> You speak about low and high latency like it's a feature.
> Is tor mixing only low latency with low latency in its circuits ? Opening
> for a dispatching of services (ie. mail on high latency, web on low ) ?
> What's the point ?

Someone can probably explain it better by putting more time into it,
but the gist of it is how long a mix node will 'hold onto' a message,
before sending it on.  (Effectively 'mixing' it.)

From the blog articles:

> A 'Low Latency' mix network means as soon as a node receives a packet, it sends it out. A 'High Latency' mix network means a node will hold onto a message for some amount of time before sending it out.
> Traffic Analysis is a huge part of mix network design. If an attacker is watching the network (and we generally assume they are) - how much information do they gain by watching packet paths, sizes, and times, and how easy is it? If you see a network flow from Alice to Bob, and Bob to Charlie - those flows will probably be matchable. With regard to defending against Traffic Analysis, High Latency is preferable - being able to hold onto a packet for any length of time before sending it on gives you lot more options.
> Tor is a 'Low Latency' mix network - it has no choice because it's infeasible to browse the Internet with minute-long (or longer) delays during page loads. However, email can have delays - if an email doesn't arrive for 30 minutes or an hour, it's generally not a problem. So Remailers can afford to be a High Latency mix network. They will accumulate a number of messages in a pool, and then when the pool is a certain size, will send the messages out. There are multiple algorithms for pooling, and we'll go into more detail about them and pool attacks later.

As a mix node, if I accumulate 8 same-size messages, and then send
them all out at once to 8 recipients, you can't use traffic analysis
to see who I sent which message out to - because they're
indistinguishable.  That's high latency.  But if I had sent out each
message as soon as I got it, you could see which message went to each
recipient - that's low latency.

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