[messaging] Tor Hidden Services in (Cables, SMTorP, Pond)

elijah elijah at riseup.net
Mon Jun 16 11:18:30 PDT 2014

On 06/14/2014 01:31 PM, Trevor Perrin wrote:

> Some e2e messaging protocols make use of Tor Hidden Services.  It's
> interesting to think about what value this adds:

I used to think it was silly to use a low-latency network for latency
tolerant email-like messages. Onion routing is a poor substitute for a
mix network.

On the other hand, creating and maintaining public infrastructure is no
small feat, as you have pointed out in the past, and until we have a
stable and large mix network infrastructure that can handle agnostic
message protocols it make some sense to use Tor in the mean time, at the
risk of people claiming security properties that it does not provide.

Mix networks are not without their own problems [1], but there is much
room for improvement, depending on the tolerance for delay.

In the long term, once the need is more clear, we should work on Tam:
The Agnostic Mixer. But such a thing only makes sense once you are sure
you can get a lot of traffic over it [2] . We will also need to
pedantically insist the 'a' and 'm' are lowercase.


[1] Paul Syverson "Sleeping dogs lie on a bed of onions but wake when mixed"

[2] "The public Tor network is orders of magnitude bigger and has orders
of magnitude more users than the largest public mix networks that have
existed. And this is one of several reasons that onion routing networks
may be more secure than mix networks: it is harder to have a realistic
global adversary against the much larger Tor network than against a
Mixmaster or Mixminion network." ibid.

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