Lucky Green Packs It In at Tor

July 19, 2016 @ 8:31 AM
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2 min read

Lucky Green, one of Tor’s earliest participants, has decided to leave the Tor Project.

Lucky’s move may reflect a significant shift at Tor. The project is getting bigger and more diverse, as well as more complicated, and that is resulting in a number of changes across the initiative.

There has been a lot of flux at the Tor Project as of late. The newest director has shaken some trees during her tenure, and members of the board were replaced a few weeks ago. With all the confusion, perhaps Lucky simply decided it was the right time to leave.

Unknown Factors

According to Softpedia, Lucky wrote a message that was then sent to the Tor mailing list.

“Given recent events, it is no longer appropriate for me to materially contribute to the Tor Project either financially, as I have so generously throughout the years, nor by providing computing resources,” he wrote. “I feel that I have no reasonable choice left within the bounds of ethics but to announce the discontinuation of all Tor-related services hosted on every system under my control. Most notably, this includes the Tor node Tonga, the Bridge Authority, which I recognize is rather pivotal to the network.”

He added that Tonga will be shut down for good on Aug. 31, 2016. The delay is to allow Tor developers time to create and implement a substitute. Lucky Green also noted that he will be ending several Tor relays as well, although that should not cause as much disruption.

He gave the project his well wishes and doesn’t seem to be leaving on bad terms, but the move will leave Tor in the lurch.

Tonga Terminated by Lucky Green

Tonga is critical to Tor functionality since the address is hardcoded into the Tor browser. This is done to prevent ISP blocking. It seems Lucky had a secret part of the Tor network hiding in his metaphorical basement.

We may never know why Lucky Green changed his status with the anonymity network. But we do know that Tor must create another bridge authority quickly to avoid further turmoil — and to avoid losing customers who were dependent on Lucky’s tools.

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Larry Loeb
Principal, PBC Enterprises

Larry Loeb has written for many of the last century's major "dead tree" computer magazines, having been, among other things, a consulting editor for BYTE mag...
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