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[liberationtech] Help users in Iran reach the internet

Walid AL-SAQAF <alkasir admin> admin at alkasir.com
Fri Feb 10 12:37:59 PST 2012


Thanks Jacob & Tor folks for your efforts.

I'll follow up your progress so as to forward the solution to Iranian users
using our software (alkasir) to circumvent censorship.

Our users indicated that SSL websites were loading slower than usual in the
past few weeks (e.g., https://mozilla.org would load in a minute while
http://mozilla.org would load instantly). I guess they took it to the next
level with this new total SSL ban.

Nonetheless, there were dozens of Iranian users that still managed to use
our software today and they came from over 20 different ISPs. So not all
ISPs have apparently blocked secure traffic yet. But I assume the number
would go down as the government finds out about them. If you want to share
this private list of ISPs still allowing secure traffic, let me know.

Sincerely,

Walid

-----------------

Walid Al-Saqaf
Founder & Administrator
alkasir for mapping and circumventing cyber censorship
https://alkasir.com <walid.al-saqaf at oru.se>


On Fri, Feb 10, 2012 at 7:24 PM, Jacob Appelbaum <jacob at appelbaum.net>wrote:

> On 02/10/2012 06:13 PM, Enrique Piraces wrote:
> > Thanks Jake, I'll pass this around. Am I right to think that the EC2
> > instances discussed in the thread could be the best way for less tech
> > people to help? I can see that getting some traction.
> >
>
> We're working on EC2 instances that users will be able to spin up
> without any technical knowledge required.
>
> > For all, and please excuse if this was already posted, any advice we
> > should be sending to contacts in-country?
>
> Good luck with your revolution? :)
>
> >
> > Thanks, @epiraces
> >
> > -----Original Message----- From:
> > liberationtech-bounces at lists.stanford.edu
> > [mailto:liberationtech-bounces at lists.stanford.edu] On Behalf Of Jacob
> > Appelbaum Sent: Friday, February 10, 2012 6:45 AM To:
> > liberationtech at lists.stanford.edu Subject: [liberationtech] Help
> > users in Iran reach the internet
> >
> > Hi Libtech,
> >
> > I just wrote this email to the Tor-talk list and I think it's
> > important for this list to see this ASAP:
> >
> > Here's my original email as a page:
> >
> https://lists.torproject.org/pipermail/tor-talk/2012-February/023070.html
> >
> >  Here's the original email for discussion:
> >
> > In the last 48 hours a major campaign of filtering has started in
> > Iran - it started slow and now appears to be that nearly all SSL/TLS
> > traffic is blocked on a few major Iranian ISPs. Details are rather
> > rough but we're working on some solutions - we've long had an ace up
> > our sleeves for this exact moment in the arms race but it's perhaps
> > come while the User Interface edges are a bit rough still.
> >
> > Here's the deal - we need people to run Tor bridges but a special
> > kind of Tor bridge, one that does a kind of traffic camouflaging - we
> > call it an obfuscated bridge. It's not easy to set up just yet
> > because we were not ready to deploy this for everyone yet; it lacks a
> > lot of analysis and it might even only last for a few days at the
> > rate the arms race is progressing, if you could call it progress.
> >
> > There are highly technical instructions here:
> > https://www.torproject.org/projects/obfsproxy-instructions.html.en
> >
> > Currently if you run such a bridge, you'll either need to manually
> > tell us (via email to tor-assistants at torproject.org ) about it or
> > you'll need to share these bridges with people you want to help
> > directly. It's a pain and we're working on it.
> >
> > Here's a bug report where we're working around the clock to get
> > stuff going in a user friendly manner:
> > https://trac.torproject.org/projects/tor/ticket/5009#comment:17
> >
> > This kind of help is not for the technically faint of heart but it's
> > absolutely needed for people in Iran, right now. It's likely that
> > more than ~50,000 - ~60,000 Tor users may drop offline.
> >
> > Watch this graph for an idea of the censorship impact of directly
> > connecting Tor users:
> >
> https://metrics.torproject.org/users.html?graph=direct-users&start=2011-11-12&end=2012-05-10&country=ir&events=on&dpi=72#direct-users
> >
> >  Here's the same graph but for Tor bridge users in Iran:
> >
> https://metrics.torproject.org/users.html?graph=bridge-users&start=2011-11-12&end=2012-05-10&country=ir&dpi=72#bridge-users
> >
> >  We're working on easy to use client software and if you're in Iran
> > or need one desperately, please email help at rt.torproject.org. We'll
> > try to get you a working obfsproxy bridge address and working client
> > software.
> >
> > All the best, Jacob _______________________________________________
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