Introducing the ProxyHam!
As if it wasn’t hard enough already to locate cyber criminals…. well, it’s about to get a bit more difficult… This year a DefCon 23, Ben Claudill, a security researcher with Rhino Security Labs is introducing a device to the community that adds an extra layer of anonymity to internet connections. ProxyHam works as a “hardware proxy” that uses a wireless radio connection to add a physical layer of obfuscation. The system is actually two devices. The first part is an open-source device running on Raspberry Pi, that connects to a Wi-Fi card and a small 900 MHz antenna that can be plugged in at some inconspicuous place. The other end is an antenna, similiar to the Yagi antenna pictured above that connects via radio frequencies to the first device.
Image by http://mybroadband.co.za/
The user sets up ProxyHam on a public Wi-Fi access point, such as the library. The user then can plug it in and hide it somewhere inconspicuous and leave it plugged in (perhaps a dark corner of a library). The user then can use their antenna to connect to the internet via the ProxyHam box anywhere within 2 kilometers. When law enforcement try to hone in on their IP Address, they will only see the IP of the local library. Also, to avoid detection by radio frequency scanning, the frequency is designed to look indistinguishable from cordless phones that use the same frequency. So it’s still possible to pick up the signal and track it (see Fox Hunting), but it will be like finding a needle in a haystack.
ProxyHam will be sold at DefCon this year to attendees and Claudill will be teaching others how to build their own. He intends for it to be used to protect sensitive internet users, such as whistleblowers or dissidents. Micah Lee, a security technologist for the Intercept recommends that ProxyHam should be used in addition to Tor and/or software proxies. Moving forward, Ben hopes to add in an audio recorder that will allow him to listen in on the final few moments before it is disconnected.
Also, If you are interested in learning about some other ways to hide your tracks. Check out HideMy@55.com They provide a list of free IP proxies that you can use as secure portals to the Internet, hiding your tracks at least from the novice IT sleuth.
Closing words to the Network Admin: Know whats on your network.