[messaging] Loki.network, Crypto Network HW Links, Anti Vampire and Sybil Nets, Actors Everywhere

grarpamp grarpamp at gmail.com
Mon Apr 1 19:45:59 PDT 2019

> I am personally convinced that a flat traffic shape will only dare
> attackers to cut links between parts of the network, effectively
> making an even larger traffic shape to corrilate with.

Today if play the cut links game, eventually a toggled link
will expose the traffic you seek, because there's no
fill between nodes that automatically takes its place.
Your global monitor sees a respective signal slump
among the nodes making up the subject path, each
node distinguishable by time deltas. Such signal the
adversary was probably clocking into it themselves
for easier recognition anyway... fetch 1MB, fetch 1MB,
fetch 1MB, fetch 1MB... oh noes.

Tor's hidden services are total sitting ducks
because of this. Same for likely all current
overlay networks in production regardless of
whatever service they provide... from traffic,
messaging, storage, cryptocurrency, and so on.

There are surely better links from the bib space,
yet here are some concepts on generated buckets,
retiming, how they can contain full time "empty" fill
that yields to wheat demand on the line, traffic
contracts, etc therein...


If all the nodes are independantly maintaining
independant traffic contracts between their
physical and/or logical peers, cut links won't
do hardly as much impact if anything at all...

A \
B + -----> M -----> { U V W X Y Z }
C +
D /

If nodes ABCD on the left are trafficing through
M cloud fanning out to the right mesh towards UVWXYZ,
then adversary cutout of D is not visible beyond M
if M makes up for D's packet slack on its left contract
by continuing to emit the same amount as fill to fulfill
its right contract.

M could variously blackball A for non contractual
suspect misbehaviour... weird rates, timing anomalies,
uptimes, etc.

M could signal BC that they can now renegotiate
upwards with M since M now has more rate free on
its left.

If M is cut out, the left renegotiates with some
L or N nodes via new northern or southern arc routes.

The "shape" or "bitrate" of the contracts could be
negotiated as need be, "flat" might not be necessary,
so long as the contract is upheld and policed by
all participants to it.

Contracts could be one to one, one to many, many to many,
physical next IP hop to hop, logical overlay address to
address, multiplex, simplex, tunneled, shared, etc.
And pertain to bitrates, timing, uptime, any sort
of constraints, metadata, etc.

This also makes Sybil's life more difficult...
it must now own the full path or it will lose
sight due to contracts with non Sybil nodes
in the path who are also meshed and contracted
out to other non Sybils around ot. Sybil must
also uphold all its own contracts or get
dropped by other nodes.

> I am not convinced low latency systems can be immune to traffic shape
> corrilation and hence that being said

Copper, Fiber, Radio, etc.. so long as it's quality line
rate hardware that can keep up with its advertised rate,
their time to transfer data is dependant only on distance,
not on how full the line is. Such network hardware is
agnostic... fill, wheat... it all gets there in the same time.

When people say "X latency network overlay", they're
really referring to the cost of software processing
their overlay design on their crappy stack of PC / Phone
CPU hardware. And in their transport protocols running
on the same... TCP, UDP, etc... all the way down
the stack until it hits the real network hardware,
which will either happily accept and ship the packet,
or drop it.

When people cry about "bandwidth", all they need to do
in a fill model is allocate whatever bitrate to it they like
and forget it. They're not going to get more bitrate from
their ISP than they paid for, and they'll probably contract
to the overlay under that so they can do other things with
their line. And they're not going to get more wheat bytes
across the overlay than a 100% wheat ratio (fill yields
to wheat demand) within their contract to the overlay,
even if they do disconnect from their byte transfer
based ISP / Phone afterwards.

Research would need done into routing models
needed to transit traffic across the overlay.
ie: TCP can readily jam more yet slower circuits
through a full pipe, UDP mix gets dropped routed or
reserved for. Raw IP becomes interesting.

As a network HW project for defense in depth...

If hardware makers would add line rate encryption and
fill silicon to every physical port on every switch, router,
and NIC... mandatory on by default per physical link...
that would kill off a lot of vampires.

An open IETF RFC spec for that would cost under $1
per port to integrate into existing silicon port fab
worldwide, plus electricity to drive the port which
would be estimated as part of the RFC process.
Modular agility would not cost much more at scale.

Assuming line rate hardware, there's no latency
impact here either.

> I think state actors are out
> of scope of the current threat model of llarp.

If any network application involves free speech,
politics, money aka cryptocurrency, business,
journalism, industry, messaging, personal affairs,
data storage and transfer, basically anything at all...
you can be absolutely certain that many State and Other Actors
have a serious continuum of interest in it.

Is it the responsibility of each application to
develop their own solutions to the threat?

No... probably not when many such apps ride on,
aggregate muddily over, and depend on networks.
All apps can contribute to the development
of a diversity sound number of strongly resistant
networks that they can then utilize and endorse
as they would their own.

Be they overlays on top of the internet,
enhancements to the internet,
or new guerrilla physical plant...

That process of people contributing to
original and ongoing development of new
strong networks that are not susceptible to such
Basic Bitch Adversaries as Global Vampires,
is something more should consider.

Same for likely figuring out how to get
the deployment Social aspects right so
you can circle the network wagons against Sybil.

> This may or may not change.

Pity the fool who changes even one satoshi
based on the worthless drivel herein :)

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