Wisdom of using IM clients on public networks

Discussion in 'privacy general' started by chrismani, Nov 16, 2010.

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  1. chrismani

    chrismani Registered Member

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    I was thinking if it was wise to use IM clients like Pidgin, Digsby, Miranda on a public wifi or any other network?

    Does Facebook use SSL in it chat in clients like Pidgin etc?
     
  2. vtol

    vtol Registered Member

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    anything on a public network without proper implemented and strong encryption no good idea
     
  3. nightrace

    nightrace Registered Member

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    For secure IM and file sharing there is RetroShare
     
  4. chrismani

    chrismani Registered Member

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    Can I use TOR with Pidgin?

    Is it safe to be used on a public network?
     
  5. caspian

    caspian Registered Member

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    Wow that is pretty cool looking. So you don't have a service who can log your traffic and none of it is stored, and it is end to end encryption? That almost sounds to good to be true. I don't know if I would use it for file sharing though. I bet it's slow. Small files maybe would be cool. But for chat it sounds perfect.
     
  6. katio

    katio Guest

    Tor works like this:
    it encrypts your connection through two hops to a random "exit node", there it's decrypted and sent in plain text to the final destination. On a public network no one can see what you are sending or receiving, they can't even say with whom you are connected. However the exit node can see everything. They don't know your real IP, but they got your screen name and can go from there if we are talking about anonymity. In terms of privacy you gained absolutely nothing and are at least as insecure as on public wifi!

    I suggest this:
    http://www.cypherpunks.ca/otr/
     
  7. hierophant

    hierophant Registered Member

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    Pidgin + OTR
     
  8. caspian

    caspian Registered Member

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    Did you look at RetroShare posted above? I would be interested in your opinion.
     
  9. hierophant

    hierophant Registered Member

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    It's apparently a friend-to-friend (F2F) network that "provides filesharing, chat, messages, forums and channels". Although friends can recommend other friends, there's apparently no automatic growth as in older P2P networks. Perhaps there are other improvements.

    Although connections are encrypted, there's apparently no provision for anonymizing IP addresses. Given that port forwarding is apparently required, RetroShare probably won't work with most anonymous VPNs. Perhaps it can work via Tor, and I don't know enough to speculate.
     
  10. chronomatic

    chronomatic Registered Member

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    Pidgin + OTR is the way to go for encrypted IM chat.
     
  11. caspian

    caspian Registered Member

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    Oh okay if it bypasses the VPN then I won't use it. I guess Pidgin with Tor is the only option. Although I do remember someone talking about Scatterchat. Do you have any thoughts about Scatterchat?
     
  12. hierophant

    hierophant Registered Member

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    I didn't mean that RetroShare would bypass the VPN. I meant that it probably wouldn't connect through the VPN. Or, at least, it probably won't connect unless one of the connecting nodes has forwarded ports.

    Make that Pidgin plus OTR aka "Off the Record". And, FWIW, Pidgin plus OTR works fine via xB.

    I don't know anything more re Scatterchat than we can both google ;)
     
  13. caspian

    caspian Registered Member

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    Thanks for that. I will give it a try.
     
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