The Web site's strengths--its near-total imperviousness to lawsuits and government harassment--make it an instrument for good in societies where the laws are unjust. But, unlike authoritarian regimes, democratic governments hold secrets largely because citizens agree that they should, in order to protect legitimate policy. In liberal societies, the site's strengths are its weaknesses. Lawsuits, if they are fair, are a form of deterrence against abuse. Soon enough, Assange must confront the paradox of his creation: the thing that he seems to detest most--power without accountability--is encoded in the site's DNA, and will only become more pronounced as WikiLeaks evolves into a real institution.
"Why would an author give away an unlimited number of copies of her book for free? That's a good question. When 'Underground''s researcher, Julian Assange, first suggested releasing an electronic version of the book on the Net for free, I had to stop and think about just that question.
I'd spent nearly three years researching, writing and editing the nearly 500 pages of 'Underground'. Julian had worked thousands of hours doing painstaking research; discovering and cultivating sources, digging with great resourcefulness into obscure databases and legal papers, not to mention providing valuable editorial advice.
So why would I give away this carefully ripened fruit for free?
Because part of the joy of creating a piece of art is in knowing that many people can - and are - enjoying it. Particularly people who can't otherwise afford to pay $11 USD for a book. People such as cash strapped hackers. This book is about them, their lives and obsessions. It rubs clear a small circle in the frosted glass so the reader can peer into that hazy world. 'Underground' belongs on the Net, in their ephemeral landscape."
"Tor provides the foundation for a range of applications that allow organizations and individuals to share information over public networks without compromising their privacy."
Tor does not provide protection against end-to-end timing attacks: If your attacker can watch the traffic coming out of your computer, and also the traffic arriving at your chosen destination, he can use statistical analysis to discover that they are part of the same circuit.
Tor doesn't magically encrypt all of your Internet activities, though. You should understand what Tor does and does not do for you.
Tor anonymizes the origin of your traffic, and it encrypts everything between you and the Tor network and everything inside the Tor network, but it can't encrypt your traffic between the Tor network and its final destination. If you are communicating sensitive information, you should use as much care as you would on the normal scary Internet — use HTTPS or other end-to-end encryption and authentication.
Tor cannot and does not attempt to protect against monitoring of traffic at the boundaries of the Tor network, i.e., the traffic entering and exiting the network. The United States government, for example, has the capability to monitor any broadband Internet traffic using devices mandated by the Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act (CALEA) and can therefore legally monitor either end of a Tor connection if it originates or terminates in the US.
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