[tor-project] Anti-censorship team monthly report: October 2019

Philipp Winter phw at torproject.org
Fri Nov 15 18:52:19 UTC 2019

Hi everyone,

Here's what the anti-censorship team has been up to in October:


* Continued work on a sequencing and reliability layer for snowflake:

* Localised the snowflake.torproject.org website and implemented a
  language switcher:

* Added an automatic packaging script for the snowflake web extension:

* Fixed a bug in the web extension hat was keeping open UDP sockets:

* Continued to investigate and monitor snowflake network health.

* Snowflake web extension localisation updates.

* Refactored the web extension code to allow for multiplexing of
  multiple clients through a single browser proxy:

* Reduced unnecessary error messages in snowflake logs.


* Finished updating BridgeDB's requirements and created a process for
  keeping requirements up-to-date in the future:

* Finished BridgeDB's language switcher:
  You can find it in the top right corner over at

* Accidentally fixed another UI issue while implementing the language
  switcher: <https://bugs.torproject.org/19839>

* Debugged and fixed BridgeDB's email autoresponder.  It broke after the
  underlying operating system was updated to the latest Debian stable:

* Finished specification of BridgeDB's metrics format:

* Started ripping out PGP support in BridgeDB's email autoresponder:
  BridgeDB's PGP keys have expired many years ago and the feature does
  not seem popular enough to warrant the (likely non-trivial) effort of
  resurrecting it.

* Implemented a parser for BridgeDB metrics and used it to create a
  bunch of visualisations:

* Fixed a bug that resulted in BridgeDB not logging vanilla bridges in
  its metrics:

* Took a look at BridgeDB's broken email localisation:
  This is another broken feature that may not be worth the effort it
  takes to fix it.

* Requested and installed new translations.  Thanks to all volunteers
  who helped translate BridgeDB!


* Moved to a new VM.

* More work towards bringing the Twitter responder back to life.


* Implemented a prototype of bridgestrap, a service that takes as input
  a bridge line and tells you if it can bootstrap a tor connection over
  the given bridge:

* Filed a ticket to discuss the future of website mirrors:

* Wrapped up our "set up new obfs4 bridges" campaign:
  Our volunteers helped set up approximately 100 new bridges!

* Started distributing some of our new high-capacity private obfs4
  bridges.  Also created a YAML file to coordinate who got what bridges.


* Made good progress on improving our obfs4 bridge Docker image:

* Finished a prototype of sharknado, a backwards-compatible obfs4
  improvement: <https://bugs.torproject.org/30716#comment:16>

* Created a wiki page that documents the process for supplying an NGO
  with private obfs4 bridges:

* Conducted a probe test of a subset of our newly created obfs4 bridges
  from the bridge campaign in September.  Found that all of the new
  bridges we tested seem to be blocked already in China:

Tor Browser

* Upgraded goptlib to v1.1.0, fixing an error condition that would arise
  when using a pluggable transport with a non-working proxy:

More information about the tor-project mailing list