traffic analysis (was: blackmail / stego)

Jim McCoy mccoy at
Wed Aug 27 16:01:59 EDT 2003

On Wednesday, August 27, 2003, at 10:12 AM, John S. Denker wrote:
>  *) Anonymity means They can't prove you're guilty.
> But it also means you can't prove you're innocent.
> A sufficiently totalitarian regime will require
> everyone to be able to prove their innocence at all
> times.  Subscribing to an anonymity service would
> therefore be automatically illegal.

While IANL, it seems that the whole anonymity game has a flaw that 
doesn't even require a totalitarian regime. I would direct you to the 
various laws in the US (to pick a random example :) regarding 
conspiracy. Subscribing to an anonymity service might not become 
illegal, but if anyone in your "crowd" was performing an illegal action 
you may be guilty of conspiracy to commit this action.  You were 
explicitly trying to assist someone to avoid lawful detection of 
illegal activity, therefore you are in danger of being charged with 
conspiracy to commit the illegal act (even if the overt act was never 
successfully completed, which is where things could get really surreal 
for the remailer/crowds/proxy groups.) It is also worth noting that the 
burden of proof in a conspiracy trial is substantially lower than for 
other cases...


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