Public Notice - How to hack SAFE Browser Plugin users

A tutorial for site publishing would be nice. At least one user was confused as to how to do it properly. One too many in my book.

It should also inform the reader that if they previously created an account with the same public ID as their current one, they will not be able to publish their site. They must create a new account with a different public ID.

This was an issue for me and at least one other. Keep an eye on the forum and I’m sure you’ll find more ideas to help people. Thanks for being so helpful and part of the community! :relaxed:


I love FoxyProxy for Firefox, it looks frightening but has great features.

That’s a great idea too! User-friendly guides could help grow the community and show how easy it is to setup their own SAFEsite for free :grin:

I’ll keep a lookout! Cheers!


Uhm, it’s a rehash of this discussion from a day ago:

Edit: you misunderstand the proxy function and rules.
The Web isn’t supposed to be browsed through the proxy - that remains unchanged (and so your fix doesn’t really fix anything).
The danger is that one’s proxy server could be replaced without him knowing.


This isn’t a rehash, the thread you quoted doensn’t explain all the issues. It’s not a matter of just a man in the middle attack. It’s the reality that a lot of users don’t realize there are currently safenet websites with generic tracking code and targeting pixels that are right now correlating them with their SAFE browsing.

I made the dangers very clear in the screenshots of before and after patching the proxy settings. All of those youtube requests are logging IP address, are you currently logged in to youtube, where is the video embedded (a safenet website!), and all tracking cookies you have from the google content network.

The threat is more serious than mentioned because I showed it’s currently being done, and that there are currently several safe sites where the uploader inserted google analytics tracking code and can see community member’s geographic locations, device information, browsing patterns…


go to http://prueba.piluso.safenet/ if it shows your IP, it is not fixed.

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It’s a rehash of that and another post. Does this sound familiar?

So, by making a connection to the SafeNet test servers and being in this Web site your have ID’d yourself as a SafeNet user.
Anyone who’s made a connection to the visualizer host made it to the list of SafeNet users that is maintained by your friendly government officials,

It is true that you can get further ID’d, down to the (un)SAFE site level, if you go to a site that forces you to make a request to clearnet, but in places where this matters visiting any SAFE site will get you in trouble. But that too was discussed, and a workaround provided, in the second link I post here.

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Perhaps they have that list, but who cares, all your traffic will hopefully go dark anyway once the launcher goes to release. They know you use Tor too, but so what. Once the move from clearnet to cryptonet happens, it’s all a gray fog.

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Go to http://prueba.piluso.safenet/ if it shows your IP, it is not fixed.

Arghhh, so many security experts, so little time!

Of course it shows your IP because you visited the freaking site.

The “proxy everything to SAFE launcher” setting, if applied, makes it impossible to visit the Internet - it doesn’t make SAFE act as your proxy ( if it did, you wouldn’t be safe anyway, because it’d be a one hop proxy; unlike the dreaded Tor).

Blocking yourself off the Internet is a poor man’s approach.
We’re back to square one: basically one has to be very careful which SAFE sites he visits, because JavaScript and Flash and other gizmos can harbor attack code. That was never in doubt, of course.

Maybe it’d make some sense to use Tor Browser with a special rule for .safenet.
Being cut off from the rest of Internet doesn’t provide additional security because your connections are single-hop to Digital Ocean…

Hopefully no dissidents were harmed in testing of this MVP.


The SAFE Launcher is absolutely acting as a proxy, but that doesn’t mean it’s a VPN, which seems to be what you’re describing. It’s not encrypting or obfuscating it.

The point of proxying it through the launcher is because the launcher cannot route to the clearweb, it literally can’t find

It’s a hack to fix a major security threat that will probably be closed in the next release.


It’s acting as a proxy that doesn’t proxy clearweb. The rules say “proxy any .safenet traffic, and don’t proxy the rest”.

Close, what the patch is doing is saying “here route all this traffic”, and the launcher only knows how to route the .safenet URLs. It can not route the packets so their requests fail.

The distinction is astronomic between a * whitelist with one blacklisted type, and a * blacklist with a single whitelisted type.

The launcher isn’t saying “route all but deny this one”, it’s saying “route none but allow this one”.

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Yes, I was talking about the SAFE Launcher as-is (provided by MaidSafe).
The changed approach cuts you off the Web as I observed earlier.

As I mentioned in the superlong topic about the beginning of this test, they didn’t organize this well and this confusion about which part does what and how has been more than evident.

That’s the worst part of it, that the gates were opened to all without clear instructions. Anyone who followed them (and the less technical users certainly used the default proxy settings) and setup a iwantdemocracyinX.safenet with some YouTube links could now be in trouble. And the fact that no such links were posted on the forum doesn’t mean that no such sites have been set up.

Another thing to point out is that this oversight, while most likely not deliberate, is a sign of things to come. It’s going to take a while (years?) until subtle security issues are understood (and of course they won’t be known immediately - I don’t expect governments to start competing for SAFE security bounties anytime soon).

Thanks for this great post

It just proofs that we shouldn’t trust on the current internet (clearnet).

We really need hackers.

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someone had emmited a warning on the test announcement thread :

I have to admit that I have been quite surprised by the fact that there was no notice about this by the Maid Team. I presume things were quite fast and hard to organise under the pression of a very awaited release. Maybe the fact that this was just a test, not the actual birth of the network, too.

I didn’t go reading the ( really nice btw ) safenet pages people posted without a condom, in the form of having everything routed through the launcher, having RequestPolicy turned on and Javascript off in Icecat.
I was surprised by the number of pages that linked to external regular web content, either images, videos, google fonts…

I have been wondering if people didn’t care about the consequences, deliberately created attacks, or innocently imaginated that the Safe network would act as a sealed bunker.

Maybe these concerns should be clearly emphasised in future documentation and release annoucements.

To me this is a clear evidence that a hardened dumb browser is needed for anyone whishing to really securely benefit of the amazing privacy and anonymity features of the network. To me something looking like a “Links” fork, with only text, links and images, zero script and zero access to regular web would do the job. It could be called “Boring Secure Browser for Paranoids” .Maybe only a handful of people would feel a need for this. I’m trying to figure out if I can write something like this.
In parallel, another browser or plugin solution, with much more ease of use and adoption, fancy features and all shiny stuff, is also something needed, in order to create mass adoption.


All of the above.
If a fool could post leaky pages, the NSA could too.

That’s only because you’re not familiar with the matter.
I explained why at the first topic that I linked in this topic.

Your idea about a hardened dumbed down browser: MaidSafe cannot prevent anyone from using any browser. Faced with two choices (FF/Chrome or Dumb Browser), what do you think our dumb user would choose? (Another funny scenario is where a less stupid, but still stupid, user visits a leaky SAFE site created by the averagely stupid user - what would he see?)
If you want a hardened browser, use Tor Browser, or cut yourself off clearweb.

Good thread. I warned for this as well in the discussion about the web proxy idea to support all major browsers:

Even though it hampers adoption, I still think I’d be in favour of requiring a dedicated browser rather than compatibility with existing browsers. We risk losing all the extra popularity and then some when tons of user’s browsing history becomes compromised.


Good to know I’m not the only one concerned with that.


We risk losing all the extra popularity and then some when tons of user’s browsing history becomes compromised.

You also lose 95% of the Web because people don’t want to start (they can install, but won’t run it) a second browser.

You probably have 2-3 browsers on your system, and you know how many you run at the same time.
(I have like 5-6 and I run up to 3-4 at the same time, but I assure you the average FB user does not.)

I said it (when dyates asked about it here: De-anonymization / IP leaking when using the Firefox plugin - #3 by janitor) a long time ago: Tor Browser. But because this issue (and overall security challenges) has been underestimated, the MVP site directed users to FF, with privacy and security consequences that have become obvious to me on Day 1 (when I changed my browser settings manually and tried to see if I could get to the server(s) hosting the PAC file).)

I didn’t look at referrer info from leaky SAFE sites but I imagine that leaky sites (referrers) appear as “localhost” (client) to referred clearweb sites. Still, it doesn’t take much to connect the dots. Anyone who plans to use SAFE for serious anonymity, privacy and security should wait or at least use Tor Browser.

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This is a very inspiring discussion for sure !

What happens when our user types :

http://really.compromizing-stuff.safeney ← notice the typo ?

in their URL field, and is returned either “Firefox can’t find this page” , or even better a nice list of google results of really compromizing pages ?

In the first case their weird DNS request is logged by the nice ISP, transmitted to their nice government secret services for being a reader of weird stuff.
In the second case , all the above applies, plus our user is logged by google and all their nice friends for being a weird digital citizen. Nice opportunity for google to make a bit of cash selling this information !

This was an expensive typo !

I really agree with this[quote=“Seneca, post:24, topic:7540”] :

A single dedicated browser has many security benefits as well. Using the same browser for both the regular web and the SAFE web practically guarantees cross-contamination and security issues.


ObamaSAFE: yeah, let’s have the project spend its money to fix your irresponsible decisions with regard to your browser settings.
Some people are simply beyond help. You can throw $18tn on the problem and it still won’t work.