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Re: [tor-talk] Project idea: TorBox

On Mon, Jan 14, 2013 at 11:23:17PM +0100, Morgan Andreasson wrote:
> *The TorBox*

First thought: we try not to mash the word 'Tor' together with generic
other words:
See e.g. a previous TorBOX:

> *What is it? *
> In short, it?s a little black box you plug into your DSL modem or your
> Fiber socket (or whatever form your broadband connection comes in). At the
> other end of that black box, you connect your computer or even your
> wifi/router.


> All connections to the internet that you make through this
> black box will be routed through the Tor network *in a secure manner*. In
> addition to making your own traffic anonymous,

I'm really nervous about the "transparently redirect the flow, whatever
it is, through Tor" model that everybody finds so intuitive.

See https://www.torproject.org/projects/torbrowser/design/
(and before that, https://www.torproject.org/torbutton/en/design/)
for all the application-level ways that things can go wrong.

I think rather than transparent redirection, such devices will do better
putting up a captive portal to explain that you'd better go fetch a Tor
Browser Bundle and then it will work. I recognize there's a tradeoff
between safety and ease-of-use here, but I worry that "let them use IE
and feel that they're safe" is a really dangerous point on the line.

> *Connecting securely. *
> There should be a TorBrowser-bundle available for download, which is
> configured to be used with a TorBox: This bundle comes with a browser, a
> download accelerator, an Instant Messaging client, an email client, and
> possibly some other utilities with presets configured for anonymity and
> security. When starting any of these ?apps?, they connect to the TorBox
> immediately and without any user interaction necessary, and tell the user
> that they have successfully established a secure connection.

Sounds great. But why are the bundles not just running Tor themselves
and being done with it?

> What kind of hardware is necessary?  I/O-circuitry, PCB, 1GB onboard memory
> or less, tiny little processor?

See the last bullet-point in my 29c3 trip report:


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