On the internet, everyone is susceptible to invasions of privacy. But, a group of developers is hoping to change this by kickstarting a one-stop solution for anyone looking to peruse the internet without having their personal information harvested. Unfortunately, the Kickstarter project isn't as unique as it first seems and appears to have been suspended after raising over half a million dollars.
one-stop solution for anonymous web browsing.
Anonabox hinges on open source software known as Tor, which encrypts user activities on the World Wide Web. While some amount of technical knowledge is usually needed to implement Tor, Anonabox will purportedly offer plug-and-play usability. Just plug the device into a router and then connect to the Anonabox over Wi-Fi or Ethernet to access the internet securely. In an interview with Wired, developer August Germar addresses the device's design, and how the hardware is intended for use in even "the most sensitive international situations." He also touches on the use of micro-USB as a power source, along with the way the Anonabox's rounded corners allow for concealment within bodily orifices.
The team behind Anonabox initially requested $7,500 but the project has since accrued over $600,000, with 26 days to spare. Previously, it was possible to acquire a unit with a $45 pledge, but now it will require at least a $51 commitment to get your own.
Here's the rub, as detailed by The Daily Dot: a very similar looking router has been discovered on Alibaba for just $19.62. And Redditors have been busily picking apart the claims made by Germar about Anonabox's uniqueness and four years of development time. For his part, Germar insists he knew nothing of his product's twin. "What makes the anonabox do what it does is the software and configuration."
10/16, 7:22PM: The post has been updated to reflect concerns raised over the accuracy of claims made by the Kickstarter project.
10/17 1:48PM: The post has been update to include the project's suspension.