Tor: Anonymous Communications for the Dept of Defense and you

Roger Dingledine, Project Leader, The Tor Project

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Roger Dingledine

What do the Department of Defense and the Electronic Frontier Foundation have in common? They have both funded the development of Tor (, a free-software anonymizing network that helps people around the world use the Internet in safety. Tor’s 1800 volunteer servers carry traffic for perhaps half a million concurrent users including ordinary citizens who want protection from identity theft and prying corporations, corporations who want to look at a competitor’s website in private, bloggers and activists around the world, and soldiers and aid workers in the Middle East who need to contact their home servers without fear of physical harm. I’ll give an overview of the Tor architecture, and talk about who uses it and why, and what security it provides. Then we can open it up for discussion about open research questions, wider social implications, and other topics the audience wants to consider.


Roger Dingledine is project leader for The Tor Project, a US non-profit working on anonymity research and development for such diverse organizations as the US Navy, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, and Voice of America. In addition to all the hats he wears for Tor, Roger organizes academic conferences on security and anonymity, speaks at such events as Blackhat, Defcon, Toorcon, CCC congresses, and Hacking at Random, and also does tutorials on anonymity for national and foreign law enforcement.

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