Justice Department officials said Wednesday they have not asked …
Justice Department officials said Wednesday they have not asked the Tor Project to modify its technology to make identifying online criminals easier. “We are working to use legal means available to us and the technology available to us” to identify criminals who use the Tor anonymity network to hide, said one.
Officials spoke with reporters ahead of today’s sentencing of Kirk Cottom in a federal court in Omaha, Neb., for receiving and accessing child pornography via websites hidden in the Tor network. Cotton is among 19 men convicted in connection with illicit websites run by an Omaha-based administrator, who was sentenced to 20 years in prison in January 2014. Tor Project members, who have demonstrated their technology for Justice officials, say the anonymity their network offers can’t be selectively applied. Either it works for everyone or no one.
The DOJ officials also insist they’re not attacking Tor. “It is not different than using an iPhone or any other kind of device to take a picture,” the official said. “It’s not the technology, it’s the use of that technology.”