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Re: [tor-talk] noise traffic generator?

Matej Kovacic writes:

> Hi,
> there is some interesting project called Noiszy: https://noiszy.com/
> It generates fake traffic. It is more "artists" project that real
> countermeasure, but I am thinking to implement something like this on my
> network with several machines inside.
> However, the main problem is that Noiszy works too random, and is not
> "walking" in websites enough time and enough consistent to give an
> impression someone is really browsing something.

There have been a few projects in this space before, like Helen
Nissenbaum's TrackMeNot, and at least two others that I'm not thinking
of right away.

I agree with your concern that it's currently too easy for an adversary
to use statistics to learn if traffic is human activity or synthesized.
Another problem is that the sites that the traffic generator interacts
with might themselves get suspicious and start responding with CAPTCHAs
or something -- which would then also reduce the plausibility of the

I also wonder if someone has studied higher-order statistics of online
activity, in the sense that engaging in one activity affects your
likelihood of engaging in another activity afterward (or concurrently).
For example, you might receive an e-mail or instant message asking you
to look at something on another site, and you might actually do that.
On the other hand, some sites are more distracting and less conducive
to multitasking than others.  For example, you probably wouldn't be
playing a real-time online game while composing an e-mail... but you
might play a turn-based game.

There are also kind of complicated probability distributions about events
that retain attention.  For instance, if you're doing something that
involves low-latency interactions with other people, it's only plausible
that you're actually doing that if the other people were also available
and interacting with you.  The probability that a given person continues
communicating with you declines over time, and is also related to time
zone and time of day.  But there's also a probability that someone else
starts interacting with you.

Some of these things will probably have to be studied in some depth in
order to have a hope of fooling really sophisticated adversaries with
synthesized online activity.

Seth Schoen  <schoen@xxxxxxx>
Senior Staff Technologist                       https://www.eff.org/
Electronic Frontier Foundation                  https://www.eff.org/join
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