Tor Messenger is arrived, the secure Tor instant messaging

Pierluigi Paganini October 30, 2015

Today the TorProject has released a new beta version of Tor Messenger, based on Instantbird, an instant messaging client developed in the Mozilla community.

It’s official, the Tor Project has launched the first beta version of Tor Messenger, an open source and Encrypted instant messaging client that relies on Tor network.

The messenger has been designed with privacy by design, but with a great care for its usability.

The experts at the Tor Project explained that the newborn Tor Messenger app encrypts the content of instant messages making impossible eavesdropping of conversation and identifying the interlocutors.

Tor Messenger integrates the “Off-the-Record” (OTR) Messaging that allows private conversations over instant messaging by encrypting messages and then routing them over the Tor network. The mechanism is similar to the one adopted to protect user Internet activities, the traffic is routed through the TorNetwork making impossible to intercept it.

“Tor Messenger is a cross-platform chat program that aims to be secure by default and sends all of its traffic over Tor. It supports a wide variety of transport networks, including Jabber (XMPP), IRC, Google Talk, Facebook Chat, Twitter, Yahoo, and others; enables Off-the-Record (OTR) Messaging automatically; and has an easy-to-use graphical user interface localized into multiple languages.” states the post published by the Tor Project.
tor messenger 2

The experts at Tor Project explained that that have considered a number of messaging clients for inspiration during the design phase, including Pidgin, Adam Langley’s xmpp-client, and Instantbird.

“Instantbird was the pragmatic choice — its transport protocols are written in a memory-safe language (JavaScript); it has a graphical user interface and already supports many natural languages; and it’s a XUL application, which means we can leverage both the code (Tor Launcher) and in-house expertise that the Tor Project has developed working on Tor Browser with Firefox. It also has an active and vibrant software developer community that has been very responsive and understanding of our needs. The main feature it lacked was OTR support, which we have implemented and hope to upstream to the main Instantbird repository for the benefit of all Instantbird (and Thunderbird) users.” continues the post.

Tor Messenger is built on Instantbird, the Mozilla’s instant messaging client, and can be run on versions of Windows, Mac, or Linux.

The colleagues at TheHackingNews have detailed the procedure that is composed of the following steps:

  • Download Tor from here
  • Drag the app to your Applications folder
  • Run and launch the app (currently in beta)
  • Log in to your preferred instant messaging service or services
  • Once logged in, you will be able to chat securely and anonymously without any further extra hacking.

Tor Messenger client currently supports the Jabber (XMPP) chat protocol, IRC (Internet Relay Chat), Facebook Chat, Google Talk, Twitter , Yahoo!, Desktop clients like Adium for Mac and Pidgin for Windows.

The TorProject is working to provide automated builds of Tor Messenger for all platforms and they have already announced a series of improvement, including:

Don’t waste time, try the Tor Messenger.

Pierluigi Paganini

(Security Affairs –  Tor Messenger, Tor Network)

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