Be a Patriot on the Interwebs

Run a TOR relay. If you have a 24/7 connection with more bandwidth than you normally use, this is a way to make the world a better place at effectively no cost.

TOR is an acronym for The Onion Router. Onion for layers and layers. Your browser will meet the server you want to talk to on some random machine thousands of miles from either.

The system was originally written by the Office of Naval Research, and is now maintained by a private foundation with major funding from the NSF. The mission was to create an environment that people in China and Iran could use to get information to the outside world.

There are many on the net who claim that that TOR came from the CIA so of course there is a back door. If it did come from the CIA, I’d probably agree. But it was the Navy, and they know they’re up against China and Iran, I don’t see them hanging a yank out to dry. It’s also open source, so I think it’s clean.

Anyway, if you want some 420 from the Silk Road, or to read the latest dish on Wikileaks, the NSA can notice that you sent a message to to TOR and TOR hit Wikileaks. (If you hit a site inside TOR I question their ability to trace.)  But, if you totally legally relay a megabit of Tor data, second in and second out, your personal traffic is simply not visible.

Note, if you run an exit node the feds can have a provocateur go fetch some child porn to crucify you with. If you merely relay, they have to crack TOR and admit it in order to get you. I honor the folks who run the exit ports, but I”ll stick to relaying.

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