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Anonymity Online – Current Solutions and Challenges

Abstract : Internet communication, regardless whether it is encrypted or not, comes with an abundance of protocol metadata. Web browsers reveal plenty of information to web applications. Additionally, web service operators have a great interest in their users’ preferences and behaviour, leading to the development and deployment of several sophisticated tracking mechanisms. Therefore, the protection of the user’s privacy on the Internet becomes increasingly difficult. Helpful privacy enhancing tools and techniques, which are often free of charge, are available to everyone, although have not reached widespread adoption yet. In this paper, we discuss different techniques of tracking as a challenge to online anonymity. Furthermore, we present current solutions on the application level as well as on the network level to provide anonymity, and finally we point out avenues for future research in the field of online anonymity. We find security-hardened operating systems promising to protect personal data against relatively strong adversaries on the user side. On the network side we consider lightweight network-based techniques like IPv6 pseudonymisation as promising technologies for future practical and usable anonymity on the Internet.
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Matthias Marx, Erik Sy, Christian Burkert, Hannes Federrath. Anonymity Online – Current Solutions and Challenges. Marit Hansen; Eleni Kosta; Igor Nai-Fovino; Simone Fischer-Hübner. Privacy and Identity Management. The Smart Revolution : 12th IFIP WG 9.2, 9.5, 9.6/11.7, 11.6/SIG 9.2.2 International Summer School, Ispra, Italy, September 4-8, 2017, Revised Selected Papers, AICT-526, Springer International Publishing, pp.38-55, 2018, IFIP Advances in Information and Communication Technology, 978-3-319-92924-8. ⟨10.1007/978-3-319-92925-5_4⟩. ⟨hal-01883626⟩

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