Matt Traudt

An onion (v3) (SAT [What's this?]) a day keeps the bad guys away | About me

Stop Visiting Randomly-Generated Onion Services

Posted on 24 Jan 2019 by Matt Traudt


If you've written a script that tries to access random onion services, or all onion services in order, or something else that attempts to brute force the namespace of onion services ...

You don't realize how unlikely it is that you will ever find a working link.

Let's put that tiny number in some context. How about Powerball?

You will never find a working onion service by randomly clicking on links on my list of all onion services or by randomly generating links and trying them.

By trying you are wasting Tor network resources. This isn't a problem if you are a human just clicking on a few links in my list of all onion services. But if you write a script that does this, you start having a significant effect. You are making a bunch of Tor relays waste resources building circuits for you to look up onion service descriptors that don't exist. That's not exactly cheap. Circuit building is some of the most expensive crypto Tor has to do. This is a waste of electricity and a waste of the limited valuable resource of Tor network capacity, which some people actually rely on to live a free life.

(Oh and there's even more possible v3 onion services)

tags: tor, onion-service