[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]


>                         SANDY SANDFORT
> . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
>Okay, back to basics.  David Merriman wrote:
>    But if the system is set up for total anonymity, _who
>    would know_ that an escrow agent was the "bag man"? Just
>    like no one would know who the contractee was, or the
>    contractor:
>The escrow agent is a publicly known entity.  That's how it gets
>a reputation.  How do you imagine an escrow agent could get a
>reputation for being a murder's bag man if it didn't advertise
>as such.

If the escrow agent has a reputation for reliability, honesty, integrity,
etc, then the nature of the transaction is irrelevant.  Any reasonably
intelligent hit man would have sense enough not to commit all his 'business'
to any single escrow agent, just as no reasonably intelligent C'punk would
trust all his/her mail to a single remailer.

I still don't see the problem: the whole process is anonymized.  There is no
reason that the escrow agent would have to know *why* the "money" is in
escrow, nor who the financer is, nor who the recipient is to be.  All that
is necessary is for the hit man to provide suitably disguised/encrypted
evidence that the terms have been met.  Presumably, the person contracting
the hit would be aware of how to go about setting all this up would have
sufficient wit to establish a means of independent validation; if not, then
the hit man would certainly have sufficient motive to do so :-)

>         If it advertises as such, I believe most people would
>refuse to do any business with it.  If it doesn't advertise, how
>will it get those sorts of clients?  

The only *fundamental* feature of an escrow agency is it's reputation for
reliability/stability/security/etc.  The nature of the transactions simply
don't matter, just as a remailer's reliability is based on it's up-time,
cycle time, input/ouput isolation, etc, regardless of the nature of the
messages passing through it.

What sorts of clients?  The ones that pay the escrow fee?  Doubtless, the
escrow agency would have a means of ensuring their own payment :-)

>                                       There is no reputational
>incentive to perform the loathsome service, and plenty of
>incentive to (a) just keep the money, or (b) blow the whistle to
>the cops and the intended victim (and keep the money).  Please
>note, this was all intuitively obvious from my previous post.

True enough - *but only as long as the nature of the service could be
identified*, which would not apply to a properly operated escrow agency.

Dave (adjusting Nomex undies under asbestos coveralls) Merriman
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 
Finger [email protected] for PGP/RIPEM public keys and fingerprints.
Unencrypted Email may be ignored without notice to sender.  PGP preferred.
Remember: It is not enough to _obey_ Big Brother; you must also learn to
*love* Big Brother.