Although widely used, currently popular peer-to-peer (P2P) applications offer no user privacy. By design, services like BitTorrent and Gnutella share data with anyone that asks for it, allowing a third-party to systematically monitor user behavior. As a result, using a P2P network means that your online activities become public knowledge.
OneSwarm is a new peer-to-peer tool that provides users with explicit control over their privacy by letting them determine how data is shared. Instead of sharing data indiscriminately, data shared with OneSwarm can be made public, it can be shared with friends, shared with some friends but not others, and so forth. We call this friend-to-friend (F2F) data sharing. OneSwarm is:
* Privacy preserving: OneSwarm uses source address rewriting to protect user privacy. Instead of always transmitting data directly from sender to receiver (immediately identifying both), OneSwarm may forward data through multiple intermedaries, obscuring the identity of both sender and receiver. For more details, check out the OneSwarm overview screencast or our papers.
* User friendly: OneSwarm’s interface is web-based and supports real-time transcoding of many audio and video formats for in-browser playback, eliminating the need for casual users to master a new application’s interface or search for custom media codecs.
* Open: OneSwarm is freely available and built on existing standards. OneSwarm can operate as a fully backwards compatible BitTorrent client, and its friend-to-friend data sharing features are built on cryptographic standards, e.g., X.509 certificates and SSL encryption.