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Re: Hacker strikes through student's router

On 11/8/05 5:49 PM, "poncenby smythe" <smythe@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

>> For the record, Tor developers (and many at the EFF) are indeed of
>> many reasons people have claimed that developing anonymity is bad.  We
>> think about them a lot, and right now, we don't think that they're
>> correct. In fact, we discuss many of them in the abuse faq, the main
>> faq, and the "Challenges" paper.
>> In case anybody cares.
> I believe(and hope) a great many people care about this.
> Does anyone know of other papers written on the subject of 'abuse' of
> anonymous systems?

I am not aware of such a study. I'm not certain about the usefulness of such
a study. For 100s of years my ancestors have attempted to obtain the maximum
privacy possible, whether in Europe or the U.S. Frankly, we have moved away
from heavily populated areas, not because we were avoiding people, but
because we wanted to retreat to a private place, where we could have private

Privacy is not a new desire. Once the Roman Church was outlawed in Britain,
Catholics just went underground and used secret means of communicating.
Witness the so-called secret societies that have existed over the centuries.
Freemasonry is but one example. In most dictatorships, Freemasons are
repressed and the society is driven underground. Hitler outlawed the
Freemasons. The Soviet Union drove them underground. However, in both cases
Freemasons continued to communicate via private channels with secret
handshakes, etc.

I don't mean to be long-winded, but many worthy causes have required private
communications. So, I suppose, there ARE studies over the millennia that
demonstrate the need for privacy. Early Christians worshipped and used
private communication channels. Of course, EFF web site demonstrates what is
at issue in areas of the world where governments are trying to prohibit
private communication - places like China.

> at the moment I personally feel that Tor is affording people with
> questionable intentions an extremely robust and simple to use method
> to conceal their identity.  I have not read the 'challenges' paper
> but is it correct to think tor developers justify (if that is the
> right word) their developments by believing that if miscreants did
> not use Tor they would simply move onto another similar mechanism for
> conducting their business.
> or would taking the tor network down cause any kind of disruption?
> impossible questions....

The questions are very difficult, but not impossible, IMHO. In the U.S., we
have decided long ago that individuals would have as much individual
freedom, as long as the exercise thereof would not abridge anyone else's
freedom, health, property or safety. Privacy is evolved from individual

Therefore, IMHO, individuals can be held responsible for nefarious deeds,
but not the mechanism that allowed the crime - whether that be firearm, or
privacy service.