We are living in an era of Mass Surveillance, conducted by the Government Agencies like the NSA and GCHQ, and we ourselves gave them an open invitation as we all have sensors in our pockets that track us everywhere we go i.e. Smartphone. Encryption and security are more important today than any other time in our history. So, the best proactive way to keep your tracks clear is - Always use only trusted privacy tools and services.
The same folks behind the Anonymity Tool, Tor Browser Bundle is currently working on a new Privacy tool called 'Tor Instant Messaging Bundle' (TIMB), that will help you with encrypted communication to keep your online conversations private.
The Tor is the free software that lets users browse the Internet anonymously and mostly used by activists, journalists and to conceal their online activities from prying eyes.
Tor Instant Messaging Bundle, or TIMB is a real time anonymous chat system, that will simply route all of your chat data through the Tor's encrypted network, which uses proxy servers to hide the identities of its users, according to the documents posted from the Tor Project's 2014 Winter Dev Meeting. The client itself will be built on top of Instantbird, an open source instant messaging service.
The Tor Instant Messaging Bundle will encrypt user messages multiple times, including destination IP, making it sufficiently difficult to trace the original source.
Since the governments are engaged in the widespread data collection and analysis, using various gateways such as Cell phone location information, the Internet, Camera observations, and Drones. As technology and analytics advance, mass surveillance opportunities continue to grow. In which, the Tor Instant Messaging Bundle can come out to be the world's most secure real-time communication tool.
"People in countries where communication for the purpose of activism is met with intimidation, violence, and prosecution will be able to avoid the scrutiny of criminal cartels, corrupt officials, and authoritarian governments," states the Tor TIMB project.
By the end of March, the experimental test builds of Tor Instant Messaging Bundle (TIMB) is expected to be available, but the first experimental release won't include 'Off The Record' (OTR) capability. OTR mode provides strong encryption for instant messaging conversations.
"Tor has grown popular over the past few years as a way of surfing the Web while blocking network surveillance, analysis of your traffic, or other monitoring that threatens personal freedom and privacy, confidential business activities and relationships, and state security," states the Tor Project founders. "The group's work is all the more significant following reports of NSA's foreign and domestic surveillance activities."
But, every technology has positive and negative aspects as well. Since, Tor is also a Deep Web friendly tool that allows hackers and cyber criminals to carry out illicit activities.
It's a matter of concern, but we have to adopt measures to protect our privacy now, as the former NSA contractor Edward Snowden said:
"A child born today will grow up with no conception of privacy at all. They’ll never know what it means to have a private moment to themselves an unrecorded, unanalyzed thought. And that’s a problem because privacy matters, privacy is what allows us to determine who we are and who we want to be. Together we can find a better balance, end mass surveillance and remind the government that if it really wants to know how we feel asking is always cheaper than spying."
The NSA has been trying to hack into the Tor network for years, and the FBI was recently caught seizing data from TorMail, an anonymous email service, and trying to use that data to catch hackers.