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(dis)advantages of DC-Net vs remailers
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[email protected] wrote:
> Chaumian digital mixes--what you Americans call "remailers"--mainly
> solves the sender anonymity problem. Message pools, or broadcast to a
> group or site that includes the receiver, mainly deals with receiver
> anonymity. The combination of the two deals with both.
> Both are solved elegantly with the Dining Cryptographer's Protocol,
> about which much is written on this list every few months. Messages
> are "sent" in an Ouija-board fashion and received by the person who
> can successfully decrypt a public message sent over the system.
I tend to favor remailers + broadcasting + anonymous-return-addresss
over the DC-Net protocol. Let me list some of their relative
advantages and disadvantages. Please add to these if you can think
Advantages of DC-Net over remailers
- more flexible trust relationships - you can add your buddies to
the set of people who have to be compromised to trace you
- lower latency - don't have to wait for remailers to collect enough
mail for batches
- untracibility need not depend on assumptions about the enemy's
Disadvantages of DC-Net
- complexity - explaining the core concepts of a remailer takes only
a couple of lines, as opposed to a couple of screens for a DC-Net
Implementation of a DC-Net seems to be an order of magnitude
harder as well.
- more vulnerable to denial of service attacks
- MUCH higher bandwidth costs
I think over the long run the last factor will be most important. In
a DC-Net, for each bit one participant wants to send to another, EVERY
OTHER participant must broadcast a bit to ALL participants. I can
imagine a remailer-net with one million users, but I don't see any
possibility that a DC-Net can be scaled to that size.
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E-mail: Wei Dai <[email protected]> URL: "http://www.eskimo.com/~weidai"
=================== Exponential Increase of Complexity ===================
--> singularity --> atoms --> macromolecules --> biological evolution
--> central nervous systems --> symbolic communication --> homo sapiens
--> digital computers --> internetworking --> close-coupled automation
--> broadband brain-to-net connections --> artificial intelligence
--> distributed consciousness --> group minds --> ? ? ?