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New Anti-Censorship Scheme Could Make It Impossible to Block Individual Sites

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Credit: iQuantum

Researchers at the universities of Michigan and Waterloo are developing Telex, an approach to combating Internet censorship that turns the entire Web into a proxy server, making it nearly impossible for a censoring government to block individual sites.

The system requires that Internet service providers (ISPs) outside the censoring nation install Telex stations. When a user wants to visit a banned Web site, a secure connection is first established with any password-protected Web site that is not blocked and serves as a decoy connection. The Telex software then marks the connection as a Telex request by applying a secret-coded tag into the page headers using public-key stenography. The user's request passes through routers at different ISPs, some of which would be Telex stations, which hold a private key that enables them to recognize tagged connections from Telex clients. The stations would send the connections so that the user could get to any site on the Internet.

"It would likely require support from nations that are friendly to the cause of a free and open Internet," says Michigan professor J. Alex Halderman.

From University of Michigan
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Abstracts Copyright © 2011 Information Inc., Bethesda, Maryland, USA


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