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Comparison of Anonymity Networks


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The Comparison of Anonymity Networks

This thread is meant to be a comparison of various anonymity networks (Tor, I2P, etc) and help people decide on which to use.Tor

--What is Tor?

Tor is a network of virtual tunnels that allows people and groups to improve their privacy and security on the Internet. It also enables software developers to create new communication tools with built-in privacy features. Tor provides the foundation for a range of applications that allow organizations and individuals to share information over public networks without compromising their privacy just like the normal network (I2P, etc).

For a deeper explanation:


--Benefits of Tor over I2P and other networks:

- Coded in C

- Significant funding

- Better documentation, has formal papers and specifications, better website, many more translations

- Uses less memory

- Has already solved some scaling issues I2P has yet to address

- More resistant to state

-level blocking due to TLS transport layer and bridges (I2P has proposals for "full restricted routes" but these are not yet implemented)

-  Designed and optimized for exit traffic, with a large number of exit nodes

--Disadvantages of Tor over I2P and other networks:

- Less secure and less encryption.

- Blocked on most sites.

- Not as fast hidden services as I2P

- I2P APIs are designed specifically for anonymity and security, while SOCKS is designed for functionality.

- Only has UDP transports.

- Horrible hidden services filled with trolls, inactiveness, spambots and child porn.I2P

--What is I2P?

I2P is an anonymizing network, offering a simple layer that identity-sensitive applications can use to securely communicate. All data is wrapped with several layers of encryption, and the network is both distributed and dynamic, with no trusted parties.

Many applications are available that interface with I2P, including mail, peer-peer, IRC chat, and others.

The I2P project was formed in 2003 to support the efforts of those trying to build a more free society by offering them an uncensorable, anonymous, and secure communication system. I2P is a development effort producing a low latency, fully distributed, autonomous, scalable, anonymous, resilient, and secure network. The goal is to operate successfully in hostile environments - even when an organization with substantial financial or political resources attacks it. All aspects of the network are open source and available without cost, as this should both assure the people using it that the software does what it claims, as well as enable others to contribute and improve upon it to defeat aggressive attempts to stifle free speech.

And how it works?

Not as simple as Tor, you could write a book about this one. Check out the documentation


The network itself makes use of a significant number of cryptographic techniques and algorithms - a full laundry list includes 2048bit ElGamal encryption, 256bit AES in CBC mode with PKCS#5 padding, 1024bit DSA signatures, SHA256 hashes, 2048bit Diffie-Hellman negotiated connections with station to station authentication, and ElGamal / AES+SessionTag. That's enough encryption to kill an elephant.

Benefits of I2P over Tor and other networks:

- Full support for TCP and UDP.

- Designed and optimized for hidden services, which are much faster than in Tor.

- Peers are selected by continuously profiling and ranking performance, rather than trusting claimed capacity.

- Multiple more levels of encryption.

- Small, I have never seen a single site which blocks I2P.

- Peer-to-peer friendly.

- Tunnels in I2P are short lived, decreasing the number of samples that an attacker can use to mount an active attack with, unlike circuits in Tor, which are typically long lived.

- I2P APIs are designed specifically for anonymity and security, while SOCKS is designed for functionality.

- Better hidden services than Tor's child porn filled deep web.

--Disadvagesnta of I2P over Tor and other networks:

- Coded in Java, not C.

- Not as much funding.

- Has more developers.

Will be adding more later such as Freenet, etc.
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