The pseudonymous remailer AS-Node
Deutsche Version
This translation is originated to Richard Higson. Many thanx. But please mail me any correction mails.

The planned crypto regulation of the German government may render the running and usage of this server illegal!

Idea

The need for a new pseudonymous remailer grew up with the shutdown of Julf Helsingus popular pseudonymous remailer anon.penet.fi and the involvment in Winfried Müller's sects information project Religio. This new remailer should be stronger than anon.penet.fi and on the other side it should be easy to use. Especially the ability to reply to a message should be as easy as pressing the 'r'eply key.

In the Usenet News the concept of a remailer that guarantees a database-free pseud-anonymity was discussed.. This would include traceability in the case of investigations, but these can be made much more difficult, depending on the discretion (and skill) of the user. It's important that all mails are stored only in an encrypted form.

The Concept

The main idea is to use an asymmetric cryptosystem to build up the pseudonymous identity (pseudentity). The public key creates the eMail address of the pseudentity. In most asymmetric cyptosystems, the private key can be used to sign a message. This is used to prove the sender of an eMail as the correct holder of a pseudentity without further records.

The choosen crypto software is PGP, because it's available in source worldwide. The complete usage complexity is moved to the pseudentity holder in order to allow simple replies.

To create a new pseudentity, the user sends a public key to the server which then stores it. The PGP version of a public key contains user information which are merged to the new pseudentity.

Every incoming eMail must be signed. The pseudentity is derivated from this siganture. All actions requested will be done in the name of this pseudentity.

If anybody in the net replys to an pseudoymous eMail, the reply will go to the pseudoymous server. The pseudentity is named in the eMail address. Due to the fact that the server does not store information about the holder, the reply is stored. Stored eMail is always encrypted using the public key of the pseudentity. Only the real holder of this pseudentity can access the content.

To access the stored messaged, the holders sends an signed command to the server to send all incoming mail to a specified address. Normally this address is an other pseudonymous acount on an other server. I plan to add reply blocks for other types of remailers.

All communication channels between the server and the pseudentity holder are one way. That's why the use of real anonymous servers (like mixmaster) are strongly recommented.

Implementation

The as-node is running a shell script to provide the features of such a pseudonymous remailer. The logfiles are stored for a maximum of 60 days. If an incoming eMail contains the word help in the Subject: line, the helpfile is send back.


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