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Compatibility of Anonymity and Performance in Onion Routing Networks

The DFG project „Compatibility of Anonymity and Performance in Onion Routing Networks“ aims to research the extent to which future anonymization networks can fulfill their primary expectations, namely strong anonymity and high performance.

Anonymization networks like Tor denote an increasingly important tool to establish and strengthen privacy on the Internet. In order to ensure a high level of usability, which appears to be necessary for fostering their future usage, it is important to improve the performance that can be achieved by such systems. However, this creates fundamental challenges with regard to achievable anonymity guarantees.

Our project conducts a structured evaluation of the underlying inherent conflict between performance and anonymity. It aims to quantify this conflict in a theoretically sound manner, and to draw practically usable conclusions for the design of modern anonymization techniques. While security and performance in anonymization networks have previously been investigated separately, this research project wants to identify their precise interdependencies. Based on this insight, we develop methods for strengthening both, performance and anonymity, such that a practically usable trade-off can be designed and realized. This holistic approach towards both aspects is especially necessary in the face of increasingly powerful potential adversaries, for ensuring secure and usable anonymization networks in the future. Therefore, this project contributes to retaining and strengthening a free Internet.


Christoph Döpmann
Distributed Security Infrastructures
Technische Universität Berlin
Einsteinufer 17, 10587 Berlin


Tor Relays an Universitäten – Erfahrungen und Abwägungen
Citation key doepmann21toruniversities
Author Christoph Döpmann and Matthias Marx and Hannes Federrath and Florian Tschorsch
Year 2021
Journal Datenschutz und Datensicherheit - DuD
Volume 2021
Number 5
Link to original publication Download Bibtex entry

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