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What do other lainons think about the more liberal use of internet killswitches/creating an internet blackout in certain areas of unrest, etc? In recent years we have seen it happen in China, Syria, and many other countries. Is there anything we can do to avoid this? Meshnets?

Seemingly most of our lives are lived on the wired, so is it not a little scary that the government itself can completely disconnect us for any amount of time, as they wish?


tbh there's no way it can be an effective strategy in almost any scenario. As we saw in Hong Kong, if the anti-government sentiment is strong enough people will quickly adopt mesh networking to spread dissent.



It's not in the government's best interests to disconnect as that's where they do most of their surveillance. Without internet people might take to the streets and organize.


>As we saw in HK

IIRC most of firechats users were using mobile data, not the mesh feature. Due to shitty security by the app maker, they were put at even greater risk.



Good to keep logs.


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Western govs already have tested this capacity, but who knows what others are capable of? You can avoid being completely btfo by obtaining the equipment to set up WLANs/meshnets and not being over-dependent on electronics. A direct hit by X30+ class solar flare could do a lot more damage than directed energy weapons.

Obtain a local map and compass. Obtain radios capable of transmitting locally and store them with your backup electronics in an EMF shielded unit, keeping in mind that isolating the unit from earth ground and all other sources of power might be the best way to preserve the contents in the event of a solar flare.

Backup critical information offline. Use a physical medium such as paper to backup info that you would want to have access to in unlikely but possible event you had no access to anything electronic for the long-term.

Your threat model should not only include geopolitical threats capable of wiping your hard drives from orbit but also natural disasters and space weather. The Great Reset may happen within our lifetimes.

If you're prepared, you don't have much to fear. other than those who are unprepared. In fact, in the event of The Great Reset, a well-prepared Lain might even have something to look forward to.


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Prepare yourself, Lain.


Actual events prove your statement false. When local entities can capture all data at the scene and drop connections to the rest of the world, the government doesn't give two shits -- they've got what they want anyway. Localized blackouts are going to be one of the go-to tactics employed across the board in the future.

Right now I am unaware of any good solutions for dealing with an internet blackout at the metropolitan level. For partial blackouts at protest sites and such, one could theoretically employ optical relays from central communications points to get out of the jamming zone (RF jamming/tower spoofing are going to be the primary steps to setting up a quarantine/blackout area). However, if it gets bumped to the metro level and hard lines in are turned down, there's not a hell of a lot to be done. At that point you're looking at links that are beyond most people, because the options are basically private fiber, microwave, sat comms, etc. It's conceivable that a well-designed optical relay could break out of the bubble, but there's effectively no way any individual is going to handle the traffic loads required to seriously circumvent a blackout of that scope for the majority of people.

IMO, the best any of us can do is set up contingency nets. My money would be on dialup with packet radio as a secondary since POTS lines will be among the last data carriers to be turned down. Packet radio might fall prey to jamming as well, but either way you're not exactly going to be streaming videos to the outside world of what the hell is going on on the ground.

Physical transport of large payloads may well prove to be the most reliable method. Drones with preprogrammed routes carrying SSDs/HDDs daily might actually be the best way to get video to the outside world if things got crazy authoritarian, but no matter what you're still counting on the far side getting the payload and being able to do something useful with it.



They prove to be partially false. If one recalls the Syrian riots. Assad was using the Internet to cast a wide net on protest organizers [2]. Now, the current thought is that Syria cut off the internet in order to prevent further organization and disemmination of it's actions... However a look at [1] would prove otherwise?

What we could tell was that Syria primarily favored using techniques such MiTM with SSL certificate insertion [3]. So my two cents is that black outs would be highly localized to prevent organization at points of insurgency, but outright blackouts in large swathes are counterproductive to the State as a whole. Until the government creates a mirrored infrastructure to reach vital points of their own -- because government agencies still require internet connectivity with lets say API's for devices and services contracted to them -- then large killswitch events are a point of last resort. Not to mention doing so would cripple our own economy.

On the point of RF, using something like TVWS is nice since it would require a jammer that blocks out such a large swath of public airspace that it would only hurt them. Transievers can also be used (illegally) to push packet switched radio into other mostly unused parts of the spectrum that would again would require shooting themselves in the foot.

For anyone who has tried NLoS wifi, it's not horrendously difficult to achieve connectivity over a large area (atleast for the 'backbone') given a few simple pieces of equipment.


This drone idea, if we take the RF jamming as a given, would be a horrible idea. Most drones either use 802.11 as simple carriers and would fall prey rather quickly [4].

[1] https://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/aug/13/snowden-nsa-syria-internet-outage-civil-war

[2] http://www.reuters.com/article/us-iran-syria-crackdown-idUSBRE82M18220120323

[3] https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20141118/05173029176/lessons-censorship-syrias-internet-filter-machines.shtml

[4] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5CzURm7OpAA


>Actual events prove your statement false.

Such as? I only know of piss poor countries that couldnt afford advanced surveillance, but even that's becoming rarer as costs fall.


In retrospect I think we were both talking of different scales initially. I expect short range (segments of a city) blackouts and tower spoofs to become the norm in response to civil unrest events. These are low-cost actions since the rest of the city and all hard infrastructure is untouched.

Scaling up to a city is certainly a much larger challenge that we haven't seen much of, though I think it's a reasonable expectation that we'll encounter it within the next 15-25 years, which is why I softballed a few ideas in that direction.

In terms of drones, I was speaking mostly preprogrammed flights with no ground link required, at least not beyond brief initial launch and terminal control. This would be delivering a HDD/SSD as payload -- a modern-day sneakernet when all other lower latency avenues of sufficient bandwidth are unavailable, which is a pretty big step away from anything we've seen.

We've seen tower spoofing and/or jamming at protests in the last year in the US, and I believe it was reported during Euromaidan, though I'm not positive on that one.

Granted, this is mostly first-world countries, and in these examples the scope is pretty localized. If you start looking at metro-scale events, then yeah, that's a different story with a higher cost (for the moment).



Indeed. These are different "theaters" in scale. Although a total blackout I still believe to be out of the question given current conditions. In the future, I would expect (and hope) that vital infrastructure is moved back to dedicated infrastructure or provide some more resiliency. Not because I want the state to 'win' but the bakchoe [1] incident in Arizona showed how utterly vulnerable our point of failures are. But that's another issue entirely, and off topic.

I would expect that their abilities to perform deep packet inspection in a much more intelligent way will be what allows them to leave bureaucratic infrastructure in tact while severing consumer access.

What we need to mitigate wide-spectrum (obviously not universally wide) jamming is much cheaper USRP/SDR devices (with Tx support). The BlueRF demonstrated the ability to significantly reduce costs by a quarter or half. Unfortunately it was just a kickstarter project. [2]

Ostensibly, current C&C structures for demonstration and activist purposes can be quickly set up cheaply currently. But in my estimation, this will only help with one way communications. Activists can hold a USB-SDR of the cheap-o variety while C&C nodes transmit. Using rt_fm and mutli-mon something like POCSAGS or some other set up can stream relevant intelligence. [3]


Back to this idea. I like this alot. Given my opencv knowledge it would be interesting and with some work doable given todays materials to create a self-navigating drone. One could use an accelerometer and onboard compass with a small camera. Then using registration points create a "virtual" highway to reach the destination. Of course GPS would be the first choice in navigation sensors used, but given the idea of jamming, I'm assuming this would be one of the spectrums hit.

> Optical communication

What you suggested with optical communications is absolutely the best bet. I can't source this right now. But I remember watching a documentary where they build IR laser radios and simply passed the audio into a DAC and back out again. This sort of ultra-directional and high fidelity method of communication is obviously immune to radio jamming. I say we get on this (as a community) immediately.

An interesting look at how jamming trended in the Cold War is [4]. Maybe it offers some behavioral cues to how future state-sponsored opponents will act.

1. http://archive.wired.com/science/discoveries/news/2006/01/70040?currentPage=all
2. http://hackrfblue.com/
3. http://tools.kali.org/wireless-attacks/multimon-ng
4. https://www.cia.gov/library/readingroom/docs/DOC_0000497732.pdf


>What do other lainons think about the more liberal use of internet killswitches/creating an internet blackout in certain areas of unrest, etc? In recent years we have seen it happen in China, Syria, and many other countries. Is there anything we can do to avoid this? Meshnets?
I was in Egypt during the revolution when the government turned off the mobile phone communication and Internet. I was left with no way to contact my family outside of Egypt to let them know I was okay. I could not contact anyone else within the country. I barely spoke the local language. There was no way to find out what my nation's embassy would have available for me, if anything, or if there was a mandatory evacuation planned.

The blackout did everything to make it harder for those wishing to avoid the unrest, and did absolutely nothing to stop rioters from setting fires to cars and buildings, looting museums, and being generally destructive.


I don't tink they give a shit about destruction of infrastructure, they just want to make it harder for everyone to organise so that they can just impose martial law and be done with it.


>they just want to make it harder for everyone to organise so that they can just impose martial law and be done with it.
But that's kind of my point: it had precisely the opposite effect. When you shut down communications, you're basically conceding that the other side has won the argument.


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>is it not a little scary that the government itself can completely disconnect us for any amount of time

"Us"? Who do you really mean by that? I would welcome your imagined scenario. It's not frightening, unless you actually fear the loss of the current status quo.

A reduction in a productive population's access to information is counterproductive to the aims of most industrialized governments reliant on distributed labor. Lack of access to information slows productive human capacity to a relative crawl and stifles economic growth.

When authoritarian behavior occurs at a mass scale, significant losses in productivity occur due to unaddressed inefficiencies compound and the collapse of distributed labor systems becomes much more likely. The larger the population, the faster this can occur.

I'd welcome a legitimate reason to permanently disconnect and get back to living a more natural life. Our governments and zombie corporations are utterly dependent on the ease by which a virtually dependent population can be manipulated.

Memes going live, showing up offline, affecting real politics and economies - that is what the establishment has grown to fear. Look at the reaction to "pizzagate" and the election. Those were offline events affected by the behavior of a significant number of individuals rejecting the word of "trusted" information authorities. Cutting people off increases this level of real-time information disconnection and facilitates the spread of rumors and propaganda.

Any survival oriented government fears people acting offline without information more than they fear them acting online where conversations and ideas can be easily manipulated.


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I hate to be 'that guy', but I am beginning to think the internet is a volatile evolution in our society we were just not ready for. Perhaps kill-switches are necessary for our own survival let alone the health of our society.

Culture has always had it's bad eggs - from beatniks and jazz to gangster rap and neoprogressivism - and their influence has been bound by the rate and effectiveness of their dissemination media. Radio had it's effects and we worried about it then, but everything was turned out manageable. The same could be said for terrestrial TV, then Satellite TV, then even the primitive generations of the internet.

But, my point is, we were not ready for this generation of the internet. Previous generations survived mass-print, then radio, then TV, mostly because the influence brought upon culture by information dissemination was bound by the rate and effectiveness it's medium of delivery. As our mediums have become more advanced, so too have their rate and effectiveness to influence culture. Presumably, our ability to withstand the extremes of these influences have been substantial enough to filter that information which would harm us. But, in it's latest iteration, our primary medium for information dissemination is beyond our control, and radicalisations are starting to become apparent.

I think Kojima was right. That the internet is a creation beyond our control that we enthusiastically allow to shape and maybe damage our society. The hacker communities have been fervent opponents for the intelligence agencies controlling our internet, and it's most like they are doing it for a totally different reason, but the same idea behind an ultimate power filtering the internet for our own well-being as a species was presented in MGS2, and is it's reasoning really so flawed?

Perhaps a internet kill-switches should exist, not for the government to enact further controls, but for our own survival. Not the whole thing, just parts of it. I think we'd find a way through it regardless.


If the internet bothers you so much, then don't go on it for leisure purposes. Check your work email (if you have one), buy clothing when you need it, but besides that steer clear. Most people over 50 or so behave in this way, so it can be done.


It's not about effectiveness or how "advanced" the medium is. It's about context. Context is content and the medium is the message. The medium at play here though is not necessarily the internet itself it's social groups.

With TV, print and radio what you see is what you get and there is less content variety because you only see what is popular. The internet is interactive though and that is it's power. Instead of only seeing a limited range of views and content you can find other people who like almost exactly what you do and only interact with them forming echo chambers. It's the equivalent of being able to teleport your house anywhere at a moments notice. Since there are no geographical limits forcing you to get along with with anyone you seek out people just like you.

Where this gets out of control is when these people seem like your friends. Everyone in your social group saying something is much better at influencing you than propaganda on the TV. These social connections can also be fake. Astroturfing isn't clever or a revolutionary idea, it just only works on the internet and it works because human beings are social animals. The internet is only dangerous when people move their social lives onto it.

I firmly believe that the Arab spring was started by astroturfing done by the CIA. That's why there will never be a killswitch, they don't just spy on people with it they control them. Facebook has done experiments on influencing peoples moods by tweaking the algorithm that controls their feeds and it works. Being cautious doesn't help either, even if you know you're being manipulated it still works.


>I firmly believe that the Arab spring was started by astroturfing done by the CIA. That's why there will never be a killswitch, they don't just spy on people with it they control them. Facebook has done experiments on influencing peoples moods by tweaking the algorithm that controls their feeds and it works. Being cautious doesn't help either, even if you know you're being manipulated it still works.

Did you buy into the western media propaganda of "the Arab Spring happened because of twitter!"

The Arab Spring happened because Arabs were fed up of having dictators, not because of social media or whatever. That's just a way for tech bros in SV to try and claim they helped.


NLoS wifi? whats that

post it too short


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Use a fucking search engine. Seriously, I was able to get an answer on the first page and it's significantly faster than waiting for someone on here to reply.