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Submission + - Time to encrypt all P2P traffic? 3

VORNAN-20 writes: Yesterday's item here about Comcast screwing around with P2P traffic brings up an idea. Is it time to change the P2P standard to encrypt all traffic? I think that almost any current PC would have no problem handling the extra load, and really, Comcast or any ISP has no business knowing what you are sending in the first place. I am not a network guy but I think that this is doable. If azureus, ktorrent, etc were all to come out with an "encrypt all packets using " option maybe this could be managed quickly and cleanly. It would be best to move quickly before all of the ISPs catch on to this. Come on developers, liberate us from the network meanies!!
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Time to encrypt all P2P traffic?

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  • by darnok ( 650458 ) on Saturday October 20, 2007 @08:38PM (#21059279)
    I've been thinking for a while that encrypting P2P traffic will finally spell the end for the MPAA, RIAA etc. Well, in combination with something like Tor to obscure the end point IP addresses. Something like a BitTorrent client with mandatory encryption and Tor-like functionality has to be under development already...

    Once there's no way of examining the content moving over P2P, there's very few choices left for copyright enforcers to identify their "bad guys" or prevent wholesale copying:
    - pressure ISPs to block encrypted P2P traffic (won't work - there's too many valid long-standing legal uses for encrypted traffic, such as ssh, sftp, that are part of mainstream computing for this to go ahead)
    - attempt to decrypt the traffic as it passes through some node (not practical unless/until some sort of quantum computing solution becomes commercially viable)
    - e.g. use "honey pot" torrents, where a copyright owner puts up their own content, logs the IP addresses of who's downloading it, then whacks them with the big stick (would probably initially work OK, until someone takes them to court on the basis of entrapment. The use of Tor or something similar to obscure endpoint IP addresses would make this essentially impossible)

    I see P2P + encryption as basically inevitable, and I'll be curious to see what can be done on the part of the copyright owners to try to lock down its use.
    • Unfortunately, Comcast ( or more correctly Sandvine, who makes the equipment) could easily reverse engineer the encryption algorithm and incorporate it into their scheme.

      What I think would work is a Linux/Windows/OSX kernel patch to the network stack that could temporarily and selectively disable reset commands for certain IP addresses when the application requests it. This would be part of the P2P install - it would include the afforementioned kernel patch that would not affect other network connections,

Were there fewer fools, knaves would starve. - Anonymous