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Re: [tor-talk] Iran cracks down on web dissident technology

On Mon, Mar 21, 2011 at 1:59 PM, Joe Btfsplk <joebtfsplk@xxxxxxx> wrote:

> I've never known Sam to get involved in, or fund something - especially like
> this - * w/o wanting something in return.* ÂEver. ÂWHETHER or not they make
> known, to anyone, what they want or intend to do. ÂIt's been shown for over
> 50 - 60 yrs (probably much longer) that even people in charge of entire govt
> projects (or govt funded ones), often don't know the Â*full* extent of
> what's being done w/ the research, technology, info, etc. ÂIf you want to
> ignore history, go ahead.

What they have gained with the Tor project, and I'm just brainstorming
here because I'm from Sweden and don't know much about the internals
of DoD, is this:

They need a project like Tor as much as "we" do, if not more. They
need ways to communicate with spies and dissidents located all over
the world, they need a system that let their people do this without
causing any suspicion.

With Tor, they have such a tool, and the openess of the software and
source code means that it's more thoroughly tested than they could
ever have done in secret. It is likely that they have a highly
modified version of Tor and that they are watching the Tor project
very carefully as a research project to see the strengths and
weaknesses with such a project.

Planting backdoors in software like this is pretty useless and
ineffective, because you can only use it once. As soon as you act on
information received, there is a very big chance that the backdoor
will be uncovered, Tor will lose all credibility, and no one will ever
again use it for anything that the US would seem interesting.
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