Deep vs Dark Web, Privacy, Tor History & Config 03 of 03


So, now that I’ve given a bit of a history
lesson on Tor and some oh so very interesting things that can and have occurred on it, I’d like to tell you a little bit about
how Tor actually works and what happens to the data that’s passed through the network. Typically, when you want to access something
on the internet, you fire up your computer, pop open a browser and type in the address
you’d like to visit–or search for something with a search engine and then navigate to
that address. In this situation, you are connecting from
your home computer to your Internet Service Provider, or ISP, who then directs you to
your destination. On Tor, however, things function a bit differently. For starters, as I mentioned before, you can’t
use just any old browser to access a darknet. Tor has its own, which is integrated with
a special version of Firefox, as you can see here. While it is possible to configure you own
access to the dark web, it is not recommended. The people at the Tor project work tirelessly
to ensure the user experience on the Tor network is as safe and secure as possible. Utilizing the special Tor browser guarantees
that you will have access to updates and patches specific to Tor the moment they are available. In addition, the use of this browser in conjunction with Tails, a live operation system that you can boot from a USB, or other external device, greatly increases security. Anyhow, once you’ve got your browser up
and running, you can then connect to a Tor hidden service. But this isn’t as clear cut or direct as
it is on the open web. Traffic travels from your computer through
at least three nodes on the network chosen by your machine and finally to your destination. You can choose more than three, if you’re
feeling paranoid. These nodes are hosted by volunteers all over
the world and your computer could connect to any of them! As you can see here, my computer has chosen
three nodes located in the United States, Russian Federation, and the United Kingdom. So we’ll use those as our example. Because traffic can be sent from one side
of the world to the other and back before reaching it’s destination, the dark web isn’t exactly known for its
speed, therefore, users expecting the nearly immediate response they experience on their
100Mbps connections at home, may find themselves to be a bit disappointed. The three nodes, or relays, are known as your
entry or guard node, your middle relay, and your exit node. I have two examples to show you to display
exactly what happens to your data on the Tor network and why it is considered more anonymous
than visible web communications. In my first example, you can see that the
data essentially loses a layer of encryption as it travels from node to node, and at the
exit node, as the traffic travels to its destination, it is no longer encrypted. This key negotiation process utilizes a combination
of public key encryption and what is known as the Diffie-Helman Key Exchange protocol
in order to carry out this action. In addition, due to the fact that nodes are
hosted by volunteers on the Tor network, some checks and balances have been put into place
in order to guarantee the integrity of the the data as it is accepted by each node. Another way of looking at this is in this
way. As I’ve previously stated, your computer
chooses three nodes on the network to pass you traffic to its destination. As this choice is made, Your computer negotiates with these nodes,
three separate, shared crypto graphic keys in a particular way, so that each node can only see that the traffic
is meant for it and its source, but it does not know if you’re the original
sender of the data, nor can it see what’s inside. Your payload and key are added to your data and what comes out is known as a cipher text. Once a layer of encryption is shed or peeled
off like the layer of an onion, so to speak, the node will then see the subsequent destination. And that’s all the entry and middle relays
can see. This key negotiation also prevents outsiders
who do not know the key, from deciphering what’s been encrypted. To explain it further, your computer encrypts
your data in this manner: The key you’ve negotiated with the exit
node comes first. You information and key go in and out comes
a ciphertext addressed to your destination. Encapsulating this is another layer formatted
identically, but addressed to the middle relay. And finally, the last layer is once again
formatted in the same way, with the rest of the encrypted data I’ve
just mentioned inside of it, and addressed to your guard node. When your data arrives at the guard node, the node decrypts the first layer through
the use of the negotiated key, to then find another layer inside addressed to your middle
relay. It then sends the data to the middle relay
and the same thing occurs: The external layer is removed to find an address
for the exit node, so it sends the traffic on its way. The exit node, is responsible for shedding
that last layer of encryption, And finally sending unprotected traffic to
your destination. And from this stems the concept of malicious exit
nodes. Traffic that travels throughout the Tor network
remains encrypted until it leaves the exit node to travel to its final destination. Because of this, the user controlling the
exit node, is also in control of, and can potentially view, the traffic traveling from
it. These anonymous nodes, or relays can also be set up quickly and for very little
cost. This means that a single person or organization
could theoretically control numerous nodes throughout the network, and thus compare logging information to try
to track down the sources of certain traffic. As I mentioned previously, you can choose
more than three nodes in order to decrease the possibility that a single entity could
possibly be managing each one; however, the likelihood of this happening
in general is very slim. Much more detail on all of this to come in
a future video. I’m very much looking forward to talking
to you about this in more detail, but for now, if you’ve made it through all three videos,
you’re probably sick of listening to me talk! Before you go, I do have a very serious disclaimer
for you, however: Do not, I repeat, do not go perusing around
on the dark web unless you know what you’re doing. You could stumble across something far worse
than what I’ve mentioned in this video and potentially end up in a lot of legal trouble
because of it. Keep learning and developing your knowledge
in this field before you decide to embark on a journey to the dark web. On a lighter note, it makes me so happy to teach about this, and other technical topics. If you enjoyed this, or any of my other videos,
please like, share, and subscribe! Have a great day!

Comments 4

  • I enjoyed this video series. I am in the process of starting my IT career with comptia a+ and sec+. I saw your article on GSN and fellow authors article about I2P could you perhaps do a video comparing tor to i2p with pros and cons of each? Thanks again for your well laid out video!

  • This series was legit great. Thanks a lot!

  • Nice Job! Succinct coverage of the topic in terminology and examples that are easy to understand, good teacher. I am looking forward to sharing more of your videos.

  • sensual girl, i love your voice

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