back to article Dimmed but not out: Lantern anti-censorship tool blocked in China

China’s formidable censorship apparatus has finally caught up with a Washington-backed tool designed to help users bypass the Great Firewall, but its creators have vowed to bounce back. Lantern works like a P2P network, allowing users with access to the free internet to share their connections with those whose access is …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Let information be free in china!

    Lantern, sponsored this week by: The NSA

    1. Suricou Raven

      Re: Let information be free in china!

      TOR was also a US-government-initiated project.

      The US government is very big, and often different parts are involved in power struggles or controlled by factions with competing agendas. It's very common to find situations where one agency is either impeding the actions of another by ignoring them, or actively working to oppose them.

  2. Matt 4

    seventeen thousand out of how many hundreds of millions of users?

  3. dssf

    Just some of my small thinking here, but...

    A couple of scenario questions come to mind:

    1. what if the "trusted recommending person" is really an agent of the "formidable censorship apparatus"?

    2. what if the trusted person inadvertently recommends an agent of the formindable censorship apparatus?

    In the first scenario, every person who the referring parting gets an invitation is eventually going to be trackable in some sort of digital pool, unless the Lantern project becomes more "IR Beacon" of some sort, something less of a beacon and more of a laser. It would have to limit the number of people the referrer can refer, so as to limit the number of people potentially at risk of compromise.

    In the second scenario, much like the first, the "trusted person" needs to be limited, to.

    In both cases, some sort of anti-aggregation measures would need to be implemented, too, to reduce the risk of sleuthing the IDs and traffic between parties. Probably, in tech terms, this might mean loads of encryption, varying randomly, between parties. Maybe they need to do similar to military communicatons: Ra-days, or radio days, changing up the crypto and even the channels between communicating parrties, even if they are known to each other. Problem is, though, so many people will be communicating that changing the crypto times and codes randomly and on any schedules requiress utmost discipline of the users, and timely recognition of and response to and negation of actual and presumed compromises.

    Gonna be tough. All-weather, multi-spectrum, high-altitude, homing-carrier pigeons should still be active on some occasions...

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