[cryptography] OTR and deniability

Jeffrey Walton noloader at gmail.com
Sun Jul 17 05:13:45 EDT 2011


On Sat, Jul 16, 2011 at 7:23 PM, Marsh Ray <marsh at extendedsubset.com> wrote:
> On 07/15/2011 11:21 PM, Ian Goldberg wrote:
>>
>> Just to be clear: there are _no_ OTR-related mathematical points or
>> issues here.  The logs were in plain text.  OTR has nothing at all to do
>> with their deniability.
>
> It's a good bet the entirety of the informant's PC was acquired for computer
> forensic analysis, as well as every PC Manning is known to have touched.
> There's a good chance some traffic data was retained from the network where
> Manning allegedly did the chatting and data transfer.
>
> Sure the logs we see are in plain text, but that's almost certainly not all
> the data in play. Deniability may yet still depend on OTR and its
> implementation.
>
> Note that the logs indicate the parties were unauthenticated and the
> connection was bouncing. Was this a man-in-the-middle interception? Does the
> protocol and implementation issue a message to the user when an
> "unauthenticated" identity changes its key?
If you'll notice, Lamo started with leading questions in the previous
transcript, so I believe the FBI was already in the loop (and probably
gathering evidence directly from Lamo's machine). I suspect the NSA or
some other agency caught wind (via spying on the FBI!), and started
their own reconnaissance and information gathering in the network.

Jeff


> http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2011/07/manning-lamo-logs#m765
>
>> (01:37:03 AM) bradass87 has signed on.
>>
>> (01:37:51 AM) bradass87: no no… im at FOB hammer (re: green zone); persona
>> is killing the fuck out of me at this point… =L
>>
>> (01:37:51 AM) info at adrianlamo.com <AUTO-REPLY>: I’m not here right now
>>
>> (01:37:55 AM) Error setting up private conversation: Malformed message
>> received
>>
>> (01:37:55 AM) We received an unreadable encrypted message from bradass87.
>>
>> (01:37:58 AM) bradass87: [resent] <HTML>no no… im at FOB hammer (re: green
>> zone); persona is killing the fuck out of me at this point… =L
>>
>> (01:38:07 AM) bradass87 has ended his/her private conversation with you;
>> you should do the same.
>>
>> (01:38:18 AM) Error setting up private conversation: Malformed message
>> received
>>
>> (01:38:20 AM) The encrypted message received from bradass87 is unreadable,
>> as you are not currently communicating privately.
>>
>> (01:38:30 AM) Error setting up private conversation: Malformed message
>> received
>>
>> (01:38:33 AM) The encrypted message received from bradass87 is unreadable,
>> as you are not currently communicating privately.
>>
>> (01:38:43 AM) Error setting up private conversation: Malformed message
>> received
>>
>> (01:38:46 AM) The encrypted message received from bradass87 is unreadable,
>> as you are not currently communicating privately.
>>
>> (01:38:57 AM) Error setting up private conversation: Malformed message
>> received
>>
>> (01:38:59 AM) The encrypted message received from bradass87 is unreadable,
>> as you are not currently communicating privately.
>>
>> (01:39:10 AM) Error setting up private conversation: Malformed message
>> received
>>
>> (01:39:13 AM) The encrypted message received from bradass87 is unreadable,
>> as you are not currently communicating privately.
>>
>> (01:39:22 AM) Error setting up private conversation: Malformed message
>> received
>>
>> (01:39:25 AM) The encrypted message received from bradass87 is unreadable,
>> as you are not currently communicating privately.
>>
>> (01:39:36 AM) Error setting up private conversation: Malformed message
>> received
>>
>> (01:39:39 AM) The encrypted message received from bradass87 is unreadable,
>> as you are not currently communicating privately.
>>
>> (01:39:49 AM) Error setting up private conversation: Malformed message
>> received
>>
>> (01:39:52 AM) The encrypted message received from bradass87 is unreadable,
>> as you are not currently communicating privately.
>>
>> (01:40:02 AM) Error setting up private conversation: Malformed message
>> received
>>
>> (01:40:04 AM) The encrypted message received from bradass87 is unreadable,
>> as you are not currently communicating privately.
>>
>> (01:40:15 AM) Error setting up private conversation: Malformed message
>> received
>>
>> (01:40:18 AM) The encrypted message received from bradass87 is unreadable,
>> as you are not currently communicating privately.
>>
>> (01:40:30 AM) Error setting up private conversation: Malformed message
>> received
>>
>> (01:40:31 AM) The encrypted message received from bradass87 is unreadable,
>> as you are not currently communicating privately.
>>
>> (01:40:41 AM) Error setting up private conversation: Malformed message
>> received
>>
>> (01:40:45 AM) The encrypted message received from bradass87 is unreadable,
>> as you are not currently communicating privately.
>>
>> (01:40:54 AM) Error setting up private conversation: Malformed message
>> received
>>
>> (01:40:57 AM) The encrypted message received from bradass87 is unreadable,
>> as you are not currently communicating privately.
>>
>> (01:41:08 AM) Error setting up private conversation: Malformed message
>> received
>>
>> (01:41:10 AM) The encrypted message received from bradass87 is unreadable,
>> as you are not currently communicating privately.
>>
>> (01:41:21 AM) Error setting up private conversation: Malformed message
>> received
>>
>> (01:41:23 AM) The encrypted message received from bradass87 is unreadable,
>> as you are not currently communicating privately.
>>
>> (01:41:37 AM) Error setting up private conversation: Malformed message
>> received
>>
>> (01:41:50 AM) Error setting up private conversation: Malformed message
>> received
>>
>> (01:41:52 AM) The encrypted message received from bradass87 is unreadable,
>> as you are not currently communicating privately.
>>
>> (01:42:03 AM) Error setting up private conversation: Malformed message
>> received
>>
>> (01:42:05 AM) The encrypted message received from bradass87 is unreadable,
>> as you are not currently communicating privately.
>>
>> (01:42:19 AM) Error setting up private conversation: Malformed message
>> received
>>
>> (01:45:17 AM) The encrypted message received from bradass87 is unreadable,
>> as you are not currently communicating privately.
>>
>> (01:45:20 AM) Unverified conversation with bradass87 started.
>>
>> (01:45:20 AM) bradass87: [resent] <HTML>otr fritzing
>>
>> (01:45:40 AM) bradass87 has ended his/her private conversation with you;
>> you should do the same.
>>
>> (01:45:46 AM) The following message received from bradass87 was not
>> encrypted: [otr is bugging out]
>>
>> (01:45:54 AM) Unverified conversation with bradass87 started.
>>
>> (01:46:02 AM) bradass87: no no… im at FOB hammer (re: green zone); persona
>> is killing the fuck out of me at this point… =L
>>
>> (01:46:15 AM) bradass87: [phew, seems to be working now]
>>
>> (01:47:36 AM) info at adrianlamo.com: :)
>>
>
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