The Internet Has Been Conquered: Get Busy With the Next Steps

January 30th, 2013   Submitted by Paul Rosenberg

internet_spyingIf you’re reading The Daily Anarchist, you understand the nature of rulership and you probably understand that a free, open Internet is the state’s enemy. In the end, either the state controls all Internet traffic or the Internet undermines rulership and the state withers away.

For years, people like me have been telling everyone who will listen that they need to start using encryption and to stop cooperating with the strangling of the Internet. Sadly, not many people cared. They were far more interested in free services and shiny new iGadgets. Ah well… at least I did my part.

My point today is this:

It’s over. The state has won. The Internet will be fully controlled in just a few years.

Actually, it’s worse than that. Within that same amount of time, the Internet will not only be a Worldwide Surveillance Web, but it will be a Worldwide Manipulation Web. (It already is, in part.)

Let me explain briefly:

  1. Internet surveillance is all but universal now. (If you didn’t know that, start reading here and here.)

  2. ISPs were turned into forced snitches years ago.

  3. The telcos have been in bed with the state for a long time. They are fully-owned.

  4. Facebook has integrated a government surveillance system. (See this, and this.)

  5. Forget the old “they can’t drink from a fire hose” excuse – they CAN drink from the fire hose.

  6. The “Internet Kill Switch” is being written in to one of the basic Internet protocols right now. Once in place, the people in control can shut down any web traffic that offends them: from a whole continent down to a single web site. (See this.)

  7. One of Obama’s Czars is building systems and hiring experts to influence your opinions, guide you toward “better decisions,” and to undercut “conspiracy theories” on the Internet. (If you didn’t know, see this.)

  8. Apple and Microsoft are moving to a “Walled Garden” (closed platform) model, requiring that all software is approved by them before it will run on their machines. (See here.) And I don’t think I need to tell you how deeply they’re both in bed with the state.

The free Internet is all but done. Sorry.

WHAT TO DO

If you want to retain private communication, you’ll have to work for it.

How? First, you’ll have to build mesh networks. You can find a nice, practical primer (PDF) here.

Then, once you have a local mesh network, you’ll have to connect to other networks. There are lots of ways to do that, but the best long-distance choice is probably packet radio. (Here.)

18 Responses to “The Internet Has Been Conquered: Get Busy With the Next Steps”

  1. Brazilian LibertarianNo Gravatar says:

    Or you can use TOR… look for the TOR people talking at the last DEFCON, they are great.

  2. Seth KingNo Gravatar says:

    Well said Paul. I’ve wanted to quit facebook for a while but there is no reasonable alternative. The thought of being disconnected from so many of my activist friends sucks. It’s where I get a lot of great information!

    How do you feel about i2p? I’ve really taken a liking to it recently, even over Tor. Tor suffers from a tragedy of the commons that i2p doesn’t. There’s some really cool possibilities being explored in i2p, such as a distributed and inherently encrypted emailing system.

    The other great thing about i2p is its domain system. It’s distributed, decentralized, and voluntary.

    That really seems to be the main crux of the problem with the internet as we know it. It’s DNS is completely controlled by ICANN. So, they’ve got the power to shut down a website on a whim.

    This can’t be done on i2p at all. In fact, two or more servers can go under the same domain name. A person chooses which registry to follow. It’s sort of like the yellow pages, only users get to pick which yellow pages they want to use. It’s hard to explain, but definitely worth the research.

    So, I really think i2p solves a lot of the problems you present in this article. The one main problem that still arises is our dependence on corporate/statist fiber optics. I like the link you sent us to to build our own mesh networks. Have you personally taken the time to follow all of the directions in that pdf? I’d be willing to check it out, but not really if I can’t find one person who’s actually had any success doing it.

    • “That really seems to be the main crux of the problem with the internet as we know it. It’s DNS is completely controlled by ICANN. So, they’ve got the power to shut down a website on a whim.”

      There’s also NameCoin, which is very interesting (built off the Bitcoin technology).

  3. PaulNo Gravatar says:

    Thanks.

    Yeah, I like I2P too, though my experience with it is very limited. (Can’t find time to do everything.) I expect it to last longer than Tor, hopefully a lot longer. It may be small enough to ignore, while Tor is already infamous.

    I haven’t built mesh networks myself, but I know people that have, and they didn’t have any real problems, save for the usual “first time” difficulties.

    Namecoin looks to be a pretty cool DNS work-around, but again, I haven’t played with it myself.

  4. JdLNo Gravatar says:

    Another thing to do: use steganography. Government thugs may then peer all they want, but all they’ll see is an “unencrypted” music or image file, which only the sender and receiver know contains hidden information.

  5. Fritz KneseNo Gravatar says:

    I too have been saying for years that the Internet is under police state control. Perhaps one partial solution is going back to snail mail and other forms of personal communication. But the state has all the cards. It is hard to see how a free society can evolve from where we are today though I still find Henry David Thoreau’s concept that when men are ready they will live in an anarchist society. I think mankind is ultilmately freedom orilented though at times the masses of “sheeple” make me wonder.

  6. Spiggy TopesNo Gravatar says:

    Are internet cafes safe?

  7. PaulNo Gravatar says:

    A few comments:

    Stegenography: A nice tool for short messages.

    Snail mail: Works surprisingly well these days.

    Internet Cafes: Absolutely not! Don’t ever trust computers you don’t control.

  8. Whilst I find local meshes fascinating, I don’t think that the game is over yet.

    There are far more opportunities for setting up encrypted networks within the infrastructure of the Internet. Tor is an obvious example, and whilst dedicated exit nodes can be shut down, the number of nodes ready to take its place is conceivably limitless. Anyone can run one. And, arguably, SHOULD run one.

    I usually advocate a double VPN system. One at the router level using DD-WRT, followed by a VPN client (different provider) on the computer/device. Effectively shutting the ISP out. It’s not a silver bullet, but it’s pretty good.

  9. NonsensicalNo Gravatar says:

    Tor will not be usable at all if the fed controls your ISP. The point of tor is to make yourself anonymous at point B not point A. They will see your activity and shut tor down at point A.

  10. Jim WahlerNo Gravatar says:

    Has anyone looked into Open DNS?

    I’m not up to date on web technologies, but I’ve been on their system for many years and haven’t needed to change my ID or password since then.

    You might also want to look at Startpage and Ixquick Proxy for browsing.

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